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Catholic Leaders Concerned On Immigration Hearings

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File photo of a courtroom. (credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

File photo of a courtroom. (credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

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MIAMI SHORES, Fla. (AP) — Catholic leaders in Florida are expressing concern about fast-track immigration hearings for children crossing the border.

Archbishop Thomas Wenski said Friday the child’s best interest should be the focus of any proceeding.

Wenski was joined by leaders from the Catholic Charities and immigrant advocates in making his remarks.

Cheryl Little of Americans for Immigrant Justice said the children are fleeing to save their lives and that a deportation order is “tantamount to a virtual death sentence.”

Immigration courts have been speeding up hearings for tens of thousands of Central American children caught on the U.S. border.

In Miami, Wenski said dozens of additional cases are being added to the court’s docket amid the surge in recently-arrived unaccompanied children, some of which are arriving in Florida where they have relatives.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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