Saturday, December 22, 2012

Obama administration sets U.S. deportation record: Deports Nearly 410,000 Noncitizens (Presumably 75%-plus from Mexico)

Yesterday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton announced the agency's fiscal year (FY) 2012 year-end removal numbers.

In FY 2012 ICE's Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations removed 409,849 individuals. Of these, approximately 55 percent, or 225,390 of the people removed, were convicted of felonies or misdemeanors — almost double the removal of criminals in FY 2008. This includes 1,215 aliens convicted of homicide; 5,557 aliens convicted of sexual offenses; 40,448 aliens convicted for crimes involving drugs; and 36,166 aliens convicted for driving under the influence. ICE continues to make progress with regard to other categories prioritized for removal. Some 96 percent of all ICE's removals fell into a priority category — a record high.  ICE reportedly prioritizes the identification and removal of recent border crossers and conducts targeted enforcement operations with the U.S. Border Patrol.

THe ICE press release fails to mention that the nearly 410,000 of removals breaks the U.S. removal record of about 393,500 in fiscal year 2009. See Fiscal Year 2011 Yearbook of Immigration Statistics 2011 p. 102.  The ICE news release also did not report the nationalities of those removed.  However, in fiscal year 2011 (and for several years running), about 75 percent of those deported were from Mexico. The administration may have downplayed the new deportation record in light of past criticism of its removal records, which heavily impact the Latino community and have removed many parents from families for relatively minor criminal violations.

For more enforcement data, click here.

As Bill HIng blogged yesterday, ICE also issued new national detainer guidance. This guidance limits the use of detainers to individuals who meet the department's enforcement priorities and restricts the use of detainers against individuals arrested for minor misdemeanor offenses such as traffic offenses and other petty crimes, helping to ensure that available resources are focused on apprehending felons, repeat offenders and other ICE priorities. It is applicable to all ICE enforcement programs, including Secure Communities.


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