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Illegals at Center of Testy Exchange - N.Va. county's ordinance under scrutiny during civil rights panel's hearing (TimesDispatch.com)

Prince William County's tough new measures targeting illegal immigrants prompted a heated exchange at a federal civil rights panel's hearing yesterday.

Lisa Johnson-Firth was quoted as saying that, racial profiling already is occurring in Prince William County and that her law partner from Eritrea had been stopped three times in the past few months. She said one officer asked her partner why she was on "this side of town."

Although a federal judge recently dismissed a lawsuit filed by opponents of the county's measures, Johnson-Firth said she and other lawyers are assembling plaintiffs for a new lawsuit challenging the actions.

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