Right Hooks

ICE Rounds Up 244 Criminal Aliens

But why were they allowed to roam our streets in the first place?

Jordan Candler · Sep. 1, 2015

An Immigration and Customs Enforcement crackdown on criminal immigrants, some of whom originally entered the U.S. legally and others illegally, resulted in 244 dangerous foreigners being taken off California’s streets last week. The campaign “was the most successful four-day sweep of its kind,” the Los Angeles Times reports. The apprehended, who were convicted on either misdemeanor or felony charges, represent a total of 22 countries, though most of them (191) are Mexican nationals. ICE spokeswoman Virginia Kice noted, “One of the challenges we’re facing is, because of state law and local policies, more individuals who are potentially deportable with significant criminal histories are being released onto the street instead of being turned over to ICE. [But] I think to infer from [the sweep] that potentially foreign nationals are committing more crimes is flawed.” Her first remark is interesting given the debate over sanctuary cities, but the second is a moot point. When a man in a black robe rules that criminals are free to roam the streets, they don’t often return the favor by becoming saints. Again from the Times: “In the past, it was easier for ICE agents to locate and deport immigrants who had been convicted of crimes. The agency would contact local jails and ask that such inmates be held until an ICE van could pick them up. But last year, a federal judge found that practice illegal, prompting hundreds of counties to stop honoring the detainer requests. As a result, ICE officials say they have to rely on costly and dangerous manhunts or multiday sweeps like the one conducted last week.” If they were immediately deported, like current law stipulates, American citizens like Kathryn Steinle and law enforcement personnel could avoid these unnecessary dangers altogether.

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