Detroit-area Muslims sue US, say agents repeatedly quiz them about their faith at border

DETROIT — Some Detroit-area Muslims have been held at gunpoint, handcuffed and repeatedly harassed about their religion when returning to the U.S. from Canada, according to a lawsuit that seeks to bar government agents from asking questions about religion.

The Michigan branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said border agents and the FBI are violating the First Amendment and a 1993 federal law that guarantees freedom to practice religion.

“Since the tragedy of 9/11, we have seen a steady erosion of civil liberties of Muslim-Americans,” CAIR director Dawud Walid said Friday, a day after a lawsuit was filed in federal court in Detroit.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection declined to comment on the allegations but said profiling based on race or religion is strictly prohibited. The lawsuit also names the FBI director and two agents. The FBI declined to comment.