Records from Immigration and Customs Enforcement show that the number of deportations that occurred during the two months after Trump took office rose by 32 percent as compared to the same time last year, the Washington Post reported. Of the 21,362 immigrants arrested during Operation Cross Check, 5,441 had no criminal record or, at most, traffic level convictions.
The recently-released records do little to alleviate fears that officials would mostly target violent, undocumented criminals.
Since its inception in 2003, the National Fugitive Operations Program (NFOP) has arrested more than 350,000 removable aliens. The NFOP provides policy direction, strategic planning, and operational oversight for ERO’s efforts to locate, arrest, and reduce the population of at-large removable aliens within the U.S.
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During President Trump’s first 100 days, legal citizens, DACA recipients and non-criminals have been detained or deported by immigration agents. Though President Trump has said DACA recipients would “have nothing to worry about,” and that the Department of Homeland Security and ICE would only target “criminal aliens,” things haven’t gone as smooth as Trump’s rhetoric.
As the Washington Post reported, a large number of non-criminal immigrants were deported under President Obama, however, Obama put rules in place to limit ICE’s powers during the later part of his presidency. As Jessica M. Vaughan, the director of policy studies for the Center for Immigration Studies, told the Washington Post, “ICE officers are no longer operating under the restraints imposed by the Obama administration. They’re not forced to look the other way when they encounter people who are removable.”
Many experts agree that ICE’s excessive workload has created problems that make it nearly impossible to meet the demands placed on them by Trump’s administration.
For more information, check out the entire Washington Post article here.
[H/T] Washington Post: ICE data shows half of immigrants arrested in raids had traffic convictions or no record