Judge Dismisses Complaints In Private Prison Lawsuit
A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit that claimed private prisons used by the state violate constitutional protections including a prohibition against slavery.
Judge Douglas Rayes rejected arguments made by attorneys for the NAACP that because the private prisons benefit financially from their contracts with the state they are getting the "fruits of prisoners' economic value and labor."
The lawyers argued that those contracts have effectively transformed the prisoners into property.
Judge Rayes also dismissed complaints regarding Eighth Amendment violations of unusual punishment as well as claims that the inmates are being denied equal protection.
Attorney John Dacey said he will almost certainly file an amended complaint on behalf of the plaintiffs within the next 30 days.
There are nearly 7,000 inmates in state custody incarcerated in private prisons in Arizona.