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Judicial Watch • DHS Brags of Arresting 5% of Criminal Aliens It Freed From Detention

DHS Brags of Arresting 5% of Criminal Aliens It Freed From Detention

DHS Brags of Arresting 5% of Criminal Aliens It Freed From Detention

MARCH 19, 2015

On the heels of releasing over 36,000 criminal aliens from detention, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has the audacity to pat itself on the back for arresting a tiny fraction of the illegal immigrants—thousands convicted of serious crimes—it freed in the last few years.

Does this vital agency, created after the 9/11 terrorist attacks to protect the nation, have any shame? If you recall, a Center for Immigration Studies report revealed that DHS freed an eye-popping 36,007 criminal illegal aliens from detention centers across the country in 2013. Last summer Judicial Watch sued DHS to get the details of that scandalous initiative and, earlier this month, JW filed a separate lawsuit against the agency for records involving thousands of illegal aliens released throughout Arizona in the same year. In both cases, hundreds of the freed detainees had criminal convictions.

While DHS continues to stonewall the release of those important records, it’s proudly promoting information that puts it in a positive light. This month the DHS agency responsible for immigration enforcement, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), boasted that it arrested 2,059 convicted criminals in a nationwide operation. The drill, launched at the start of March, lasted five days and was known as “Operation Cross Check.” Hundreds of ICE agents participated in the operation, which nabbed illegal immigrants from 94 countries with a “wide array of criminal convictions” according to an ICE announcement.

More than half of the individuals have been convicted of multiple felonies, ICE discloses in its announcement, including manslaughter, child pornography, robbery, kidnapping and rape. Dozens are known gang members or affiliates and dozens more are convicted sex offenders. The rest of the arrested illegal aliens captured in the recent operation have convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs and many are repeat offenders. Some might wonder how the federal government could possibly allow these individuals to be free in the first place, endangering unsuspecting communities.

Not surprisingly, that question was not addressed by Obama administration officials. Instead, DHS’s scandal-plagued Deputy Secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas, congratulated his beleaguered agency by saying this: “Today, communities around the country are safer because of the great work of the men and women of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.” Mayorkas was shamefully ousted as a Bill Clinton U.S. Attorney for orchestrating the pardon of a big-time drug dealer in Southern California. As soon as President Obama took office, he appointed Mayorkas director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) where he made headlines for abusing his power to obtain American visas for shady Chinese investors in a company run by Hillary Clinton’s brother. Nevertheless, Obama promoted Mayorkas to second-in-command at DHS.

While the administration boasts of capturing dangerous illegal immigrant criminals who never should have been released in the first place, it’s clearly allowing many more to roam the streets. Many end up committing heinous crimes against members of the unsuspecting communities they often settle in. Judicial Watch has reported on this extensively over the years and has taken legal action in a number of cases. An example involves a drunken illegal immigrant who killed a nun in Virginia. He had two criminal convictions yet was released and even granted a special Homeland Security work permit. JW sued DHS for records involving the illegal alien, Carlos Montano, from Bolivia.

JW was also the first to expose that a drunk illegal immigrant who killed a Houston police officer in 2011 had six arrest warrants, multiple encounters with law enforcement and had been caught driving without a license four times. The man, Johoan Rodriguez, had also been cited by police on eight occasions, was ticketed twice a few years earlier and had two convictions for unlawful entry into the U.S., according to public records obtained by JW from the Houston Municipal Court. Incredibly the illegal immigrant remained free and in late May struck and killed Houston Police Officer Kevin Will. Now the Obama administration wants us to be grateful that it’s parading around the nation arresting these types of criminals that were once in its custody and released.

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