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Tag: undocumented immigrants

Border Arrests Surge Amid Trump’s Pledge to Decrease Illegal Crossings

Border Patrol agent makes an arrest. Photo via Border Patrol.

By Steve Neavling

President Trump’s pledge to prevent undocumented immigrants from entering the U.S. has hit a major snag as arrests surge along the Southwest border.

According to a new federal government report, people being arrested or denied entry along the Mexican border has increased for the seventh straight month. 

Those cases reached 39,006 in November, marking a 12% increase over October. The cases have more than doubled since April.

While it’s unclear how many undocumented immigrants are slipping into the country undetected, the number of arrests and entry denials are a good indicator of the trends in people trying to enter the U.S. illegally.

Trump has trumpeted the decline in arrests during the early months of his presidency. What’s unclear is why the numbers are rising.

Driver Gets 4 Years in Prison After Fleeing Border Patrol, Crashing And Injuring 6 People

courtroomBy Steve Neavling

A man who crashed an SUV while trying to elude Border Patrol agents, injuring himself and six other undocumented immigrants, was sentenced to four years in prison Monday.

Miguel Angel Tejada-Loaiza, 21, was transporting six unauthorized immigrants near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry after crossing the Mexico border to San Diego, according to the JusticeDepartment.

U.S. District Judge Larry Burns said Tejada-Loaiza was more reckless than most human smuggling crimes.

“This case is at the very aggravated end of the spectrum,” the judge said.

The crash occurred when Tejada-Loaiza made a sharp turn and slammed into a guard rail.

Arizona Aid Group Says Border Patrol Raid Endangered Lives of Ill Migrants

border patrol 3By Steve Neavling

Border Patrol agents have long abided by an informal agreement to allow migrants to seek medical attention at a camp in the Arizona desert to prevent more deaths of people crossing the border.

But that has changed under the Trump administration after 15 trucks and about 30 agents raided the camps and detained four immigrants Thursday, the Associated Press reports. 

The crackdown prompted volunteers with the aid group, No More Deaths/No Mas Muertas, to say the “staged military siege” endangered the lives of undocumented immigrants.

‘‘The type of operation they are doing, for me, is unprecedented,’’ said Catherine Gaffney, a longtime volunteer for the group.

Although the group asked Border Patrol for more time to treat immigrants with heart-related illnesses, agents swarmed the camp anyway.

One of those captured had a prior felony conviction for drug possession and had previously been deported.

‘‘They didn’t need 30 agents to apprehend four sick people,’’ Gaffney said.

Border Patrol said the four men were taken to the hospital but were in good condition. 

ICE Agents Arrest 150+ Undocumented Immigrants in 12-Day Sting

ice-agentsBy Steve Neavling

Federal agents arrested 153 undocumented immigrants and others throughout Texas during a 12-day operation that ended Friday.

The arrests were made in Austin, Waco, San Antonio, Laredo and Harlingen. Of those detained, 138 were men, and 15 were women, ICE said in a news release. 

Of those arrested, 137 had criminal histories that ranged from aggravated sexual assault of a child to drug possession.

The undocumented immigrants came from Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, Canada and El Salvador.

Here are five summaries of those arrested:

  • A 27- year-old woman from Mexico was arrested in Laredo March 20. She has a prior conviction for injury to a child with bodily injury. She was processed and removed to Mexico.
  • A 30-year-old man from Mexico was arrested in Austin March 21. He has a prior conviction for delivery of a controlled substance (cocaine). The U.S. Attorney’s Office is prosecuting him for illegally re-entering the United States after being deported.
  • A 48-year-old man from Mexico was arrested in Harlingen, Texas, March 24. He was convicted of intoxicated manslaughter with a vehicle. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is prosecuting him for illegally re-entering the United States after being deported.
  • A 20-year-old man from Guatemala was arrested in San Antonio March 23. He was convicted of injury to a child with intent to cause bodily injury. He remains in ICE custody pending a hearing before an immigration judge.
  • A 46-year-old man from Mexico was arrested in San Antonio March 31. He was convicted of the following crimes: aggravated sexual assault of a child (first degree felony), 2 DUIs and assault. He is in ICE custody pending removal proceedings.

Other Stories of Interest

Justice Department Threatens to Strip Federal Money from Sanctuary Cities

Attorney General Jeff Sessions

Attorney General Jeff Sessions

By Steve Neavling

The Justice Department warned sanctuary cities and counties this week that they will not receive federal grants if the continue to fail to work with the crackdown on undocumented immigrants.

At a White House briefing, Attorney General Jeff sessions said the municipalities that refuse to turn over undocumented immigrants to federal authorities stand to lose a lot of federal funding, Time reports. 

“We intend to use all the lawful authority we have to make sure our state and local officials who are so important to law enforcement are in sync with the federal government,” Sessions said.

Time wrote:

There is a question about whether the federal government could withhold a wide array of federal funds from cities over their sanctuary status and still survive a legal challenge. Federalism experts say that case law has built up doctrines that help states maintain their resistance. One is the anti-commandeering principle, which suggests that the federal government cannot force state officials to enforce federal law. Other case law suggests that whatever funds the government is cutting need to be in some way related to the policy issue at stake — so the federal government would be on shaky ground withholding transportation funds in an attempt to force states to comply on an education issue, for example.

Other Stories of Interest

ICE Detains 26 Undocumented Immigrants As They Reported for Community Service

ice-agentsBy Steve Neavling

More than 25 offenders who were reporting for community service Sunday morning in Fort Worth, Texas, were detained by ICE agents over undocumented immigration statuses.

The community service program is designed for people on probation.

ICE agents detained 26 offenders who are accused of being undocumented, the Forth Worth Star-Telegram reports

According to David McClelland, chief of staff for Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn, the undocumented immigrants had convictions of high-level misdemeanors and low-level felonies.

ICE declined to give details.

“ICE officers are conducting ongoing immigration enforcement operations in North Texas. No further details are available until the conclusion of this operation,” Carl Rusnok, ICE spokesman for the Dallas region, said in an emailed statement. “ICE routinely conducts immigration enforcement operations locally and nationwide which help improve overall public safety by removing criminal aliens from our communities, and ultimately from our country.

The offenders were escorted into a bus.

Other Stories of Interest

Washington Post: Trump Administration Uses Fear to Direct Immigration Policy

border patrol 3By Editorial Board
Washington Post

As a candidate, Donald Trump pledged “zero tolerance for criminal aliens,” a stance, stripped of its tough-guy rhetoric, that might not have represented too drastic a departure from President Barack Obama’s prioritization of undocumented felons for deportation. Within days of taking office, however, Mr. Trump issued an executive order that expanded the definition of criminality so broadly as to encompass virtually any undocumented immigrant charged with a crime or even suspected of having broken a law.

In sweeps by immigration agents across the country, the new administration seemed to be making good on Mr. Trump’s threat by arresting more than 600 undocumented immigrants, most of them in metropolitan areas in a dozen or so states. While the actions by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in themselves were not dissimilar to raids undertaken during the Obama administration — which in the 2012 fiscal year alone resulted in the deportation of more than 400,000 people — they unleashed a wave of anxiety in immigrant communities. For good reason, they feel they are in the new president’s crosshairs.

That anxiety was fed by reports, subsequently confirmed by ICE officials, that along with unauthorized immigrants who had committed serious crimes, others were caught in the dragnet if they happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, lacking papers.

In a conference call with reporters, David Marin, a top ICE official in Los Angeles, justified the raids by saying that “dangerous criminals who should be deported are being released into our communities.” At the same time, though, he cast doubt on his own assertion by acknowledging that about 40 of the roughly 160 undocumented immigrants detained by ICE agents in the Los Angeles area had been convicted not of felonies but of misdemeanors — and in a few cases had no criminal convictions at all. It’s anyone’s guess how those 40 count as “dangerous criminals who should be deported.”

To read more click here. 

Trump Pledges to Immediately Deport 2-3 Million Undocumented Immigrants

Donald Trump

Donald Trump

By Steve Neavling

President-elect Donald Trump said he plans to deport two to three million undocumented immigrants immediately after inauguration in January.

“What we are going to do is get the people that are criminal and have criminal records, gang members, drug dealers, where a lot of these people, probably 2 million, it could be even 3 million, we are getting them out of our country or we are going to incarcerate,” Trump told CBS’ “60 Minutes” in a wide-ranging interview. “But we’re getting them out of our country. They’re here illegally.”

Trump said he plans to secure the border and then would decide whether to remove the remaining undocumented immigrants in the U.S.

“After the border is secure and after everything gets normalized, we’re going to make a determination on the people that they’re talking about, who are terrific people. They’re terrific people, but we are gonna make a determination at that,” Trump said. “But before we make that determination … it’s very important, we are going to secure our border.”