In early 2017, U.S. immigration arrests increased almost 40 percent as more than 40,000 people suspected of being in the country illegally were detained. Despite the administration claiming to target violent offenders, we are also seeing a disproportionate increase in arrests of immigrants with no criminal record.
The numbers were released by Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan and show the president is actually carrying through on his campaign promises to make immigration enforcement a top priority.
Overall, 41,300 people were arrested for deportation, a 38 percent increase from a comparable period last year. Nearly 11,000 had no criminal convictions, more than double the number of immigrants without criminal convictions arrested during a comparable period last year, reported Mint Press News.
Even though there were a lot of arrests and ICE agents actually did do their job under Obama, Homan said morale has improved among agents under Trump because they are “allowed to do their job.”
“Their job is to enforce the law, and that is exactly what they’re doing,” he said.
Strangely, deportations were down 12% from late January to late April compared with a year ago despite the new president’s stepped up immigration enforcement pledge.
Homan attributed the drop to a decline in arrests on the U.S.-Mexico border where immigrants are usually sent home quickly and a lengthy backlog in U.S. immigration courts that issue deportation orders.
The increase in arrests of people without criminal convictions has caused outrage across the U.S. from those who see otherwise law-abiding families being rounded up.
In response to this information being released, Angelica Salas, executive director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights in Los Angeles said the president “puts this out to distract from the real affairs of our country.” “It is unfortunate that he basically is using the pain and destroying our families as a way by which to give red meat to his base.”
MPN listed some highlights in the numbers:
— 41,300 immigrants were arrested on suspicion of being in the country illegally between Jan. 22 and Apr. 29, up from 30,000 from Jan. 24 to April 30 last year.
— 30,500 of those arrested had criminal convictions, compared to 25,800 for the earlier period.
— 10,800 did not have criminal convictions, compared to 4,200 in the previous period.
Immigration arrests doubled in the Miami and Dallas metro areas. They rose 5 percent in and around Los Angeles and dropped slightly in the San Francisco area.
(Article By Jeremiah Jones)