Border Insecurity: 35% of Criminal Aliens Released Back into States

Border Insecurity: 35% of Criminal Aliens Released Back into States

They’re already Americans. “11 million undocumented aliens are already Americans” were the words of Vice President Joe Biden last week. Do you feel like they’re Americans? Immigration reform is still unresolved. The work visa system is a mess, Paul reminded people at a recent symposium at the Newseum. And now there’s a question about Immigration and Customs Enforcement  (ICE) releasing “criminal aliens” back into the U.S.


That’s right. 35% of criminal aliens, tens of thousands of them, were released by ICE in 2013, according to an analysis on ICE documents done by the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS).


Many of the aliens ignored by ICE were convicted criminals. In 2013, ICE agents released 68,000 aliens with criminal convictions, or 35 percent of all criminal aliens they reported encountering. The criminal alien releases typically occur without formal notice to local law enforcement agencies and victims. (CIS)

Now it’s easy to get carried away with this number. On one hand, ICE did target 125,000 for deportation out of 193,000 “criminal aliens” encountered in 2013. The remaining 35 percent was released but, as critics pointed out, ICE doesn’t provide a breakdown of the crimes.

There’s a difference between violent and non-violent crimes, states Leslie Marshall (radio talk show host) on FoxNews.

And identity theft is a non-violent crime, counters Lars Larson (another radio host). They may not be physically hitting an old lady over the head with a brick, but is it okay if they empty her bank accounts?

These convictions could also be more severe than we think. Jessica Vaughan who wrote the CIS report told the Washington Times that:

…ICE chooses to treat as lesser offenses certain assaults, vandalism, sex crimes, and DUI’s. She described those drunken drivers as “a serious hazard on the roadways but not being taken seriously by immigration officials … until you get to three convictions or more.”

For someone killed or injured by a drunk driver, that’s three convictions too late.

“If you’re a legal citizen, you’re not allowed to break the law,” says Martha MacCallum of FoxNews. But if you’re an illegal alien and you hit ICE on the right day, ICE might let you off the hook. It’s baffling because we have advocacy groups  that say that Obama has deported more people than any previous president, but does that matter if we have a problem with immigration enforcement? How many of these people are just coming right back over only to be dismissed later as ‘low-priority criminal aliens’?


Who’s not doing their job here: ICE or Obama? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below or on Facebook. Send us a tweet if you dare.


(Photo courtesy of Sascha Kohlmann, via Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0)


WATCH: Is Obama ‘tough’ on immigration?
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