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Updated Oct 28, 2013 - 3:57 pm

Maricopa County appeals ruling on immigrants, smuggling

PHOENIX -- The Maricopa County Attorney's Office is appealing a federal judge's ruling that it cannot charge immigrants with conspiracy if they arrange to be smuggled into the United States.

A brief notice filed Friday in federal court in Phoenix says an appeal is being filed with the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

U.S. District Judge Robert Broomfield ruled Sept. 27 that the county's prosecution of people who arrange to be smuggled conflicts with federal law.

In a separate filing, County Attorney Bill Montgomery's office has asked Broomfield to clarify his ruling.

Montgomery's request asks whether the ruling bars any prosecutions under the state's immigrant smuggling law, not just of people who arrange to be smuggled.

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