Tuesday, October 1, 2013
Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse reports that very recent government data reveal that new, stricter guidelines issued last December have had no discernible impact on Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainer practices. As of June 2013, fewer than one in nine (10.8 percent) of ICE detainers issued by the government met the agency's stated goal of targeting individuals who pose a serious threat to public safety or national security. Further, only slightly more than one-third (38 percent) of the individuals had any record of a criminal conviction, including minor traffic violations. If traffic violations (including DWI) and marijuana possession violations are excluded, then only one-quarter (26 percent) of the individuals against whom detainers were issued had been found guilty of any criminal offense. Detainers are notices issued by ICE and other Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agencies which ask local, state and federal law enforcement agencies not to release suspected non-citizens held at their facilities, in order to give ICE an opportunity to take them into its custody. Detainers, often called "immigration holds," are a primary tool that ICE uses to apprehend the suspects it is seeking.