May 4, 2011 in Nation/World

In brief: Suit seeks halt to immigration law

 

Salt Lake City – Immigrant and civil rights groups filed a lawsuit Tuesday to try to block a Utah immigration law that they say will create a police state and is too much like one of the most controversial parts of Arizona’s immigration law, which is also before the courts.

The Utah law, signed by Gov. Gary Herbert in March, requires people to prove their citizenship if they’re arrested for a felony or class-A misdemeanor.

Marielena Hincapie, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, said it violates civil rights and other constitutional protections because it could lead to police requiring everyone they pull over to prove their legal presence in the country.

“This is racial profiling and civil rights violations at its worst,” Hincapie said.

The law center and the American Civil Liberties Union filed suit Tuesday in federal court in Salt Lake City. They’re seeking an immediate injunction against the law, which is set to take effect May 10.

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff said the measure is “completely defensible” because, unlike Arizona’s law, it requires police to check citizenship only when a person is arrested for a felony or class-A misdemeanor. Officers can use discretion for minor offenses, such as a traffic violation.

Gauguin sculpture nets $11.3 million

New York – A rare wooden sculpture of a Tahitian girl by Paul Gauguin sold for $11.3 million at auction Tuesday.

The “Young Tahitian” bust, last seen by the public in 1961, had been estimated to bring $10 million to $15 million, the Sotheby’s auction house said.

The sculpture is of a serene-looking Tahitian girl wearing large earrings and a necklace of coral and shells the French artist collected and strung himself. It’s the only known fully worked three-dimensional bust he made.

Gauguin, a post-Impressionist master, spent many years in Tahiti painting the island’s beautiful women, flowers and lush tropical landscape.

He presented the sculpture, “Jeune tahitienne” in French, to a friend’s 10-year-old daughter in 1894 after promising her he would bring her a gift from the South Seas.

The 9 1/2-inch sculpture had been in the possession of the current New England owner since 1961. The owner’s name hasn’t been disclosed.


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email