The U.S. Homeland Security Department’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in New Jersey arrested more than three dozen illegal aliens during a 5-day dragnet that began on Thursday, July 12.Following the arrests, ICE officials issued a stern warning to elected officials and law enforcement commanders regarding New Jersey’s sanctuary counties, cities and townships.
Sanctuary policies are being created throughout the United States by Democrat-run local and state governments throughout the nation. The practice has led to many locations experiencing an increase in violent and property crimes, hit-and-run traffic accidents and drug or sex trafficking perpetrated by illegal immigrants.
ICE agents said they arrested 37 illegal aliens in New Jersey’s Middlesex County alone, including 16 suspects who were recently released from the Middlesex County Jail, officials said in a news release.
“Of those arrested, 16 subjects had been previously released by the Middlesex County Jail without honoring the ICE detainer and 78% of those arrested by ICE had prior criminal convictions or pending criminal charges,” said an ICE press release.
ICE commanders and agents have slammed the county’s officeholders for their refusal to cooperate with federal law enforcement if the suspects they seek happen to be in the country illegally, including so-called “visa overstays.”
“Middlesex County, which aspires to be a ‘sanctuary county’ by protecting criminal aliens, in the process assists criminals in undermining federal law, and creates a dangerous environment in the community,” Ruben Perez, acting field office director of Enforcement and Removal Operations in the agency’s Newark office, said in a statement.
ICE had issued a detainer request asking the Middlesex County Jail to hold illegal immigrants until they could be picked up by federal officers, according to NJ.com. The County Sheriff’s Office who runs the jail, decided to ignore the request and released the illegal immigrants without notifying ICE of honoring the detainer notices.
“To the contrary, Middlesex County has adopted a policy regarding interaction with ICE by county corrections and sheriff’s department personnel which provides that the county will honor a detainer request from ICE if the inmate has previously been convicted of a first or second degree offense or was the subject of a Final Order of Deportation signed by a federal judge,” officials said. “By honoring these detainer requests the county has as its primary goal the protection of the public safety of our residents.”
When asked by reporters, the county denied being a sanctuary, but it doesn’t look like ICE is buying it, according to the news release.
Meanwhile, in central Nebraska, ten convicted criminals were among the 44 illegal immigrants arrested by ICE agents during a 5-day sweep.
Beginning on Friday the 13th (June 13), a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Fugitive Operations Team arrested 44 fugitive immigrants and immigration violators, according to ICE spokesman Timothy Counts.
During that five-day operation, which ended Tuesday June 17, ICE officers arrested 25 illegal immigrants in the city of Lexington, 12 in the town of Grand Island, two in Broken Bow township, and one each in Kearney, Cozad, Gibbon, Hastings and the city of North Platte.
Twenty-eight of those arrested were fugitives – illegal immigrants who fail to appear for their immigration hearings or hid after having been ordered to leave the country by a federal immigration judge. The remaining 16 were immigration violators encountered by ICE officers during their dragnet.