The U.S. Justice Department sued Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio on Thursday, claiming his office's defiance is "unprecedented" in refusing to hand over records related to the allegation he discriminates against Hispanics, the Associated Press reports.

The federal government has been trying to obtain the records from Arpaio since March 2009 in connection with its probe that his office is engaging in alleged discrimination, unconstitutional searches and seizures, and jail policies that discriminate against people with limited English skills.

The feds have given Arpaio until Aug. 17 to hand over the documents.

Read the full Associated Press story.

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