JUNE 21, 2006
In yet another example of the U.S. Government’s negligence in enforcing immigration law, federal authorities ordered local police in Ohio to release 20 illegal Mexican immigrants who were apprehended overnight for committing a serious traffic violation that could have killed innocent Americans.
The illegal aliens were pulled over by Belmont County Sheriff deputies for driving on the wrong side of a busy highway, Interstate 470 in St. Clairsville. They said they were driving to Virginia to work.
Frustrated deputies said that federal immigration officials ordered them to release the immigrants, even though two had been previously deported from the U.S.
One Ohio lawmaker was outraged at the federal order of release and called it an unacceptable and continued failure of the Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) agency to enforce federal immigration law. Congressman Bob Ney said that the local police are doing their job and working to enforce laws but the federal government is not.
Not long ago, the congressman spoke to a top immigration official after a similar incident in which four illegal aliens were detained by local police in Ross County but ordered released by federal officials. Supposedly, the high-ranking immigration official assured Ney that laws would be enforced in the future. Ney has vowed to contact ICE officials again to ask why this administration is still refusing to enforce federal immigration laws.
While this seems to be the case nationwide, it certainly has hit the Buckeye state hard. A few months ago, local police in Ohio County were ordered to release 18 illegal immigrants busted on another busy highway. The sheriff initially balked because the immigrants had given false names and other background information and he worried they could go on to commit crimes in his county. However, the immigrants were eventually released.
In nearby Butler County, authorities are so fed up with the illegal immigrant problem that the local sheriff is trying to shame federal authorities into action by posting a sign outside the county jail that reads “Illegal Aliens Here.” The sign is large and yellow, with an arrow pointing into the jail. Illegal immigrants who have committed crimes have cost the county thousands of dollars and the sheriff wants federal help and action.
Perhaps he shouldn’t hold his breathe.
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