Judicial Watch • Obama Admin Skews Deportation Figures

Obama Admin Skews Deportation Figures

Obama Admin Skews Deportation Figures

DECEMBER 05, 2011

The Obama Administration drastically inflated statistics to show that it has deported a record-high number of illegal immigrants with criminal records, according to federal data obtained by a nonprofit university group dedicated to researching the government.

The new documents reveal the figure is actually at an all-time low and rapidly decreasing, leaving the Obama Administration with egg on its face just weeks after bragging about removing an unprecedented number of criminal aliens. In mid-October, Obama’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) director jubilantly announced that nearly 55% of the record 396,906 illegal immigrants deported in fiscal year 2011 were convicted of felonies or crimes.

The real figure is less than 15%, according to federal records obtained by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), a data research center that provides detailed information about the operation of hundreds of government agencies. The number of deported criminal aliens has been declining steadily throughout the past year, the TRAC analysis found, even though fiscal year 2010 had an already low level of 16.5%.

In the first quarter of the fiscal year (October – December 2010) 15.8 percent of deported illegal immigrants were charged with engaging in criminal activity, 15.1 percent during the second quarter (January – March 2011), 14.9 percent during the third quarter (April – June 2011), and finally 13.8 percent during the fourth quarter (July – September 2011). The average rate across the four quarters for FY 2011 was 14.9 percent, according to records obtained from the government through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

TRAC analyzed case-by-case records covering all proceedings filed in the nation’s immigration courts, which operate under the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). The total number of deportation proceedings for aliens with criminal records dropped from 40,500 in fiscal year 2010 to 33,763 in fiscal year 2011. The number of individuals removed for national security or terrorism decreased from 42 to 30 during the same period.

This certainly contradicts the administration’s claims that it’s focusing on removing criminals while it grants backdoor amnesty to otherwise “law-abiding” foreigners living in the U.S. illegally. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) even issued new guidelines ordering immigration agents to prioritize deporting convicted criminals and those who pose public safety and national security threats.

Obama’s ICE director, John Morton, calls it a “smart and effective immigration enforcement” that essentially relies on “setting priorities for removal and executing those priorities.” If the goal isn’t met, just distort the figures and lie to the American people.

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