ICE arrests more than 130 illegal immigrant sex offenders in sweeping nationwide operation
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced Thursday that agents have arrested more than 130 illegal immigrant sex offenders as part of a nationwide operation, vowing to continue their efforts to remove illegal aliens convicted of such crimes.
ICE said its Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) had detained 138 “unlawfully present noncitizens” convicted sex offenders, including some with a current removal order. The operation took place between October 22 and November 4.
The agency, in a statement, gave a long list of those arrested by the agents in the operations. They include a 65-year-old Mexican convicted of continued sexual abuse of a child in March of this year, a Guatemalan arrested in Chicago who had a conviction for predatory criminal sexual assault of a minor and a 49-year-old Cameroonian. of sexual abuse in June.
In addition, officers arrested a Bolivian in New York on a first-degree rape conviction, a Mexican in Texas on a conviction for aggravated sexual assault of a child, and a Nicaraguan in California on a second-degree assault with intent to rape conviction degree robbery and rape with force/violence/fear of bodily harm.
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“Crimes of sexual violence are among the most underreported in America – anyone can be a victim of this type of abuse, and our officers are dedicated to tracking down and arresting known non-citizen offenders as part of their mission of public safety”, ERO Executive Associate. Director Corey Price said in a statement.
“ERO will continue efforts like these to remove people present illegally who have committed crimes against the innocent so they cannot continue to harm vulnerable populations in our communities,” he said.
The Biden administration controversially moved to significantly reduce ICE’s enforcement priorities. Guidelines issued in 2021 limited ICE to focusing on aggravated criminals, threats to national security and recent border crossings. This targeting coincided with a sharp drop in deportations and arrests of illegal immigrants.
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Earlier this year, in response to a lawsuit from Republican states, that guidance was blocked. However, while this guidance was in effect, ICE has conducted similar operations to bring in and remove sex offenders, and there were 3,415 felony sexual assaults associated with the arrests it made in fiscal year 2021.
Last month, the agency announced it had arrested more than 170 illegal immigrants who had multiple DUI convictions in a similar operation.
ICE said in its statement that ICE agents “make case decisions responsibly, informed by their experience as law enforcement professionals and in the manner that best protects against greatest threats to the homeland”.