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Thread: INDIANA - Jail prints snare illegal immigrants

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  1. #1
    Senior Member HAPPY2BME's Avatar
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    INDIANA - Jail prints snare illegal immigrants

    Jail prints snare illegal immigrants

    In state, 182 deported since April

    Jeff Wiehe | The Journal Gazette
    Published: March 25, 2012 3:00 a.m.

    Quietly and without fanfare, the federal government has been scrutinizing inmates housed at the Allen County Jail, more than it has ever done so in the past.

    And it happened so far under the radar that the county sheriff and jail staff were not aware.

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, often called ICE, activated Allen and 39 other Indiana counties as jurisdictions under the agency’s Secure Communities program in December without informing Sheriff Ken Fries or his jail commander.

    The program – which has resulted in the deportation of 182 people in the state since last April and more than 124,000 nationwide in recent years – is touted by ICE officials as a way to target hardened criminals who are in the country illegally and pose a significant threat to society.

    According to the ICE website, several jurisdictions in Indiana were activated last year until December, when Allen and nearly half the remaining counties were brought into the fold.

    Through the program, the FBI allows ICE access to its database of fingerprints collected from jails across the country. Immigration agents then check those prints against their own database of fingerprints of possible illegal immigrants and red-flag any inmate at any local jail. Agents can then move to deport that inmate.

    Critics of Secure Communities contend that despite the government’s claims that the program looks for only the “most dangerous and violent offenders,” as one brochure called them, people with minor offenses, and sometimes no offenses at all, are being caught up in the program.

    “We’re seeing a lot of people taken in for things like driving without a license that is triggering ICE to issue a detainer,” said Angela Adams, an immigration attorney for the Lewis & Kappes firm in Indianapolis.

    Adams said ICE agents can place an immigration hold on any inmate they want to question. This hold lasts for 48 hours, when ICE agents must take the inmate into custody or release the hold.

    People arrested for a minor offense that calls for them to be released from jail on their own recognizance could instead be held for two days under ICE regulations.

    “The intent is good, but in reality, what it’s also doing is loading up the system with non-violent, minor offenders,” Adams said.

    The program also marks a possibly more aggressive approach to immigration enforcement in recent years, if local statistics are an indication.

    While it’s unclear how many people have fallen under the Secure Communities program since December, ICE agents began placing more immigration holds on inmates beginning two years ago, then began taking a higher percentage of those inmates into custody.

    From 2009 to 2010, the number of Allen County Jail inmates who were placed on an immigration hold rose from 110 to 135.

    The number of those ultimately taken into ICE custody while in the jail doubled from 42 to 86.

    Last year, ICE placed 110 immigration holds on inmates and took 89 of them into custody, according to jail records.

    Jail records did not show what crimes these inmates were booked on or whether these inmates were deported after being given over to ICE.

    According to Adams, most people facing deportation are sent to judges in Chicago, who in some cases grant those accused of minor crimes some relief from deportation or give them the option to leave the country voluntarily.

    Sometimes, she said, those who have been in the United States for a lengthy period of time and can show that their family would suffer hardship if they are removed are allowed to stay and can actually be given permanent residency.

    But in other cases, prosecutors and ICE officials may stop deportation proceedings against those who have committed minor offenses, causing their immigration status to become confusing, Adams said.

    “They’re not removed, and they have no status,” she said. “They’re in limbo.”

    Fries has been a proponent of targeting illegal immigrants.

    His jail has been fingerprinting every inmate for years and sending those prints to the FBI. Since Fries’ election in 2006, every inmate is asked about his or her immigration status.

    If that inmate says he or she is in the country illegally, the sheriff’s department notifies ICE.

    The fact the sheriff’s department was not alerted to the activation of the Secure Communities program is not uncommon. According to the ICE website, this was done in many jurisdictions in the nation so there would be no changes in the routine at local jails.

    And while Fries has been critical in the past of the resources afforded to ICE – he perceives that the government is reluctant to deport illegal immigrants – the local activity by immigration agents is a step in the right direction, he said.

    “I’ve been fairly outspoken about it,” Fries said of the government’s efforts. “I’m hoping that maybe it made a difference, that maybe more people are now dedicated to this.”

    At her firm in Indianapolis, Adams said many clients are aware of Secure Communities as well as other immigration legislation intended to be harsher on illegal immigrants. And other reports from across the nation back up her claim that many facing minor offenses are being ensnared in the program’s net.

    According to a Los Angeles Times story last year, nearly half of the 11,774 individuals deported in Los Angeles County under the program from 2009 to 2011 had no criminal convictions or were convicted only of misdemeanor crimes.

    The American Immigration Lawyers Association claimed in a report last year at least 127 clients of the organization’s lawyers were under deportation proceedings, even though they were facing crimes as minor as loitering.

    In Fort Wayne, G. Herb Hernandez, executive director of United Hispanic-Americans Inc., said there has been little talk of the program. He plans on bringing up the program with other Hispanic groups in the next month or so but believes the city’s smaller Hispanic community is the reason the program is not making a splash.

    “To be frank with you, it’s not resonating at all,” he said.

    source: Jail prints snare illegal immigrants | The Journal Gazette
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  2. #2
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Indiana is now 100% I.C.E. Secure Communities

    RELATED

    Indiana is now 100% I.C.E. Secure Communities

    @ http://www.alipac.us/f12/indiana-i-c...update-222708/
    ShawnX5 likes this.
    NO AMNESTY

    Don't reward the criminal actions of millions of illegal aliens by giving them citizenship.


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  3. #3
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    I Hope, Wish, and Pray that New Hampshire will be 100% ICE Secured! Among other things to keep Illegals Out!

  4. #4
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShawnX5 View Post
    I Hope, Wish, and Pray that New Hampshire will be 100% ICE Secured! Among other things to keep Illegals Out!
    States with NO communities enrolled in Secure Communities.

    AK 0 of 27
    DC 0 of 1
    ME 0 of 16
    ND 0 of 53
    NH 0 of 10
    NJ 0 of 21
    VT 0 of 14

    ice.gov/
    3/20/2012

    ALL states are scheduled to be activated this year or next.
    Currently 79% of all U.S. communities are activated.
    Last edited by JohnDoe2; 03-25-2012 at 08:52 PM.
    NO AMNESTY

    Don't reward the criminal actions of millions of illegal aliens by giving them citizenship.


    Sign in and post comments here.

    Please support our fight against illegal immigration by joining ALIPAC's email alerts here https://eepurl.com/cktGTn

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