A Maryland judge on Friday ruled that Chad Wolf is likely unlawfully serving as acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Securityand temporarily barred the Trump administration from enforcing new asylum restrictions on members of two immigration advocacy groups, according to court documents.
“In sum, the Court concludes that Plaintiffs are likely to demonstrate (former acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin) McAleenan’s appointment was invalid under the agency’s applicable order of succession, and so he lacked the authority to amend the order of succession to ensure Wolf’s installation as Acting Secretary,” Judge Paula Xinis’ 69-page ruling said.
Xinis also wrote that “by extension, because Wolf filled the role of Acting Secretary without authority, he promulgated the challenged rules also ‘in excess of…authority,” and not ‘in accordance with the law.’”
CNN has reached out to the department for comment.
CNN has previously reported that the Government Accountability Office found that Wolf and Ken Cuccinelli, the senior official performing the duties of deputy secretary, were appointed as part of an invalid order of succession.
This is a breaking story and will be updated.