Late Thursday night, in response to a lawsuit brought by Mr. Ragbir’s lawyers, a Federal District Court judge in Manhattan granted him a temporary stay of removal and a hearing on Jan. 29 to determine whether the agents were right to detain him.
The judge, Katherine B. Forrest, ordered Mr. Ragbir to be detained in the New York area so that he could be near his lawyer and family. On Friday, the government contested the order. A hearing that will deal with whether he can be brought back from Miami will be held in the District Court of the Southern District of New York on Tuesday.
Mr. Ragbir became an immigrant rights activist because of his own case. He came to the United States in 1991 from Trinidad and Tobago. He had been a lawful permanent resident when he was convicted of wire fraud in 2000. After he served his sentence, Mr. Ragbir was ordered deported in 2006 and detained by immigration officials.
In 2011, the New York field office of ICE granted him a stay of removal. Last April, he was granted an extension of that stay, but only until Jan. 19, eight days after his check-in.
Mr. Ragbir was not the only high-profile immigrant rights leader arrested in a one-week span. On Thursday night, immigration authorities detained Eliseo Jurado, the husband of Ingrid Latorre, who is fighting deportation as she takes sanctuary in a Colorado church.
Last week, a co-founder of New Sanctuary in New York was detained; Jean Montrevil, a native of Haiti, was picked up near his home in Far Rockaway, Queens, two weeks before a scheduled check-in.
“It seems really clear to us that this is an escalation of retaliation, not just against…