NYC not backing down on feds’ ‘sanctuary cities’ order

NEW YORK (AP) — New York City officials sent a letter to the U.S. Justice Department Friday defying a directive intended to pressure the city into cooperating more with federal immigration enforcement efforts.

New York was among four so-called “sanctuary cities” that were given an Oct. 27 deadline to show they’re not hampering enforcement of U.S. immigration law.

The Justice Department has threatened to cut off millions of dollars in federal grants to the cities, which include Chicago, New Orleans and Philadelphia, if they didn’t meet certain criteria.

In New York, the Justice Department wants the city’s jails to notify federal immigration agents when someone in the United States illegally is about to be released from custody. Right now, local laws only allow city officials to share information about people who have been convicted of certain crimes.