ICE used info provided by Motel 6 to target ‘guests with Latino-sounding names,’ lawsuit says

A new lawsuit alleges that the hotel chain Motel 6 regularly supplied guest lists and personal information of guests to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which used the information to target people for arrest, including guests with “Latino-sounding names.”

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The suit, filed by the attorney general of Washington state, criticizes the “unfair, deceptive, and discriminatory practices” of the hotel chain.

The practice allegedly happened in at least six Motel 6 locations in Washington between 2015 and 2017, and included the personal information of at least 9,151 guests, according to the suit. The suit, filed in state Superior Court, also alleges that the practice was not limited to Washington and occurred at other branches of the hotel chain in other states, specifically citing Phoenix, Arizona.

“On a number of occasions after reviewing the guest list, ICE agents arrested or detained Motel 6 guests,” the suit states. ICE agents work under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security and are responsible for arresting people who are not legal residents.

Elaine Thompson/AP
Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson addresses a news conference, Jan. 3, 2018, in Seattle, announcing that his office is suing Motel 6.

A spokeswoman for Motel 6’s parent company, G6 Hospitality, did not immediately return ABC News’ requests for comment, but gave a statement to The Washington Post.

“Motel 6 takes this matter very seriously, and we have and will continue to fully cooperate with the Office of the State Attorney General,” the statement from spokeswoman Raiza Rehkoff said in The Post.

The lawsuit alleges that the guest registry information “was provided on an almost daily basis by some motels without the ICE agents having provided any documentation or evidence of reasonable suspicion, probable cause, or a search warrant for the requested guest registry information.”

John Moore/Getty Images
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), agents detain an immigrant, Oct. 14, 2015, in Los Angeles.

After singling “out guests based on national origin, including guests with Latino-sounding names,” the agents would “determine if any of the guests it identified were wanted by ICE in connection with civil immigration matters,” the suit states.

“Motel 6 staff observed ICE identify guests of interest to…

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