Thursday, February 5, 2009

Collateral Damage: ICE's Failure to Focus on Felonious Criminals!

A new report from the Migration Policy Institute details the FAILURE of the National Fugitive Operations Program (NFOP), led by ICE, to remove fugitive aliens. Even though the NFOP budget has soared from $9M to $218M since 2003, the results have been a reduction of convictions of criminal aliens from 39% to a mere 9%. As I have been reporting for some time, ICE has taken the EASY WAY OUT. They boosted the rate of ICE Raids to meet their NFOP targets. The findings of this report details that ICE has resorted to targetting non-criminals, including seamstresses, meat-packers and technical workers, just to meet their arrest quotas.
Since 2003, no immigration enforcement program has experienced a more dramatic increase in funding, nor expanded its staffing and operations more rapidly, than the National Fugitive Operations Program (NFOP). This initiative, led by US Immigration and Customer Enforcement (ICE), a componenet of the US Department of Homeland Secuirty (DHS), is intended to improve national security by locating and removing dangerous fugitive aliens. ICE defines "fugitive" as a person who has been ordered deported, excluded, or removed by an immigration judge, but has not left the country; or one who has failed to report to DHS as required. ICE further distinguishes between those fugitives who have a criminal history or are otherwise dangerous, and those who have no criminal history whatsoever. NFOP dipatches Fugitive Operations Teams (FOTs) across the country to arrest fugitives. While NFOP is focuses specifically on residential operations targeted towards fugitives, it is only one of the federal initiatives that result in the apprehension and removal of departable noncitizens, including those with criminal convictions.
The NFOP budget has soared over 23-fold in recent years, from $9 million in fiscal year 2003, its first year of operation, to more than $218 million in FY 2008. Moreover, the program has experienced a 1,300 percent growth in personnel since its inception. ICE estimates that the program has apprehended more than 96,000 persons through FY 2008. At the same time, NFOP has been at the center of many of the country's most controverisal immigration enforcement operations in the past several years...
The report concludes that NFOP has FAILED to focus its resources on the priorities Congress intended when it authorized the program. In effect, NFOP has succeeded in appreheding the EASIEST targets, NOT THE MOST DANGEROUS FUGITIVES. Furthermore, the program's structure and design appear to encourage officers to jeopardize their own safetye alienate communities, and misdirect expensive personnel resources.
ICE needs to more rigorously and comprehensively manage and evaluate the program to ensure that there is appropriate oversight of operations and guidance for FOT officers.
MESSAGE TO JANET NAPOLITANO -- Please read this report and be guided by the report's recommendations!


Vicente Duque said...

Dear Dee :

I have watched a lot of "illegals", people on TV that want to return to Mexico, but have no money, no jobs ( daily jobs ) and they are disenchanted or disillusioned with their economic possibilities inside the USA, thanks perhaps to the recession.

They are determined to return to Mexico.

It is excellent economic policy to send them to Mexico, or to carry them in a bus to the border. ( carefully so that the taxpayer or charity organization is not swindled ).

And a policy of no questions asked, no criminal registrations and so on, would work wonders.

The people that rant and rail against Latinos on TV, Radio or Blogs are very simplistic and super foolish, not to say inhuman and unkind.

They always ignore the Economic side of Things, the Trade Possibilities, Opportunities or Crisis.

Those TV anchors never read "The Financial Times" or "The Economist" or pay attention to the Nobel Prize Winners.

And they have a distorted super foolish idea of Latin America. They have total ignorance of Trade Numbers. They always look at Latin America with a Microscope, never with a Telescope as another Galaxy.

They do not live in a World of Reason but in a World of Emotions.

Helping the Immigrants to return to Mexico, with no humilliations, no digital prints, no frills, no Hate, no Hatred, no Racism, is the best Policy. It makes a lot of Reason.

And set up agencies in Mexico to inform in Spanish to all those Poorest Mexicans which are the best material for Illegals.

Hate, Racism, Sadism and Brutality do not solve problems, but make them worse.

Humanity and Kindness make Wonders and Miracles.

Vicente Duque

Border Explorer said...

Thank you, Dee, for another excellent post. I'm citing this for an internet news story I'm writing. Sure appreciate your info here.

Dee said...

Border Explorer,
You are welcome.
This is such a sad series of events. The more we learn about the Bush administration and their policies, the worse it gets!!

Dee said...

I agree. There are some that do want to go back but the ANTI Immigration policies imposed by people like Arpaio and the ICE Raids have created such fear in people that they live in hiding.
Hopefully we will see better programs in Obama's administration and Napolitano will take the fear out of the policies. AND CLOSE THE DETENTION CENTERS -- Families & workers should NOT be incarcerated. Only the felonious criminals should go to prison and then deported.

Joe said...


I think you are probably right that many of the illegals want to return to Mexico. The recession has hurt some of my family and friends as I am sure you know of someone who is struggling also. Perhaps dee is right that the detention centers are inhumane and another method should be used. You mention that they want to return but have no money to do so. If picked up by ICE whether it be because an employer wants to break the law in hiring illegals or it is the illegal himself working with a falsified social security number, I do believe the immediate deportation would be a better solution than the detention centers. When someone is deported, they have free transportation back to their home country. I want you to know that I do think that employers should be fined heavily or even closed down if they break the law. The government of the U.S. is totally to blame for not enforcing laws already on the books, there is no question that they turned a blind eye. That does not mean that the U.S. cannot now say "I made a mistake" and enforce laws that should have been enforced all along. Even President Obama said the other day "I made a mistake". It was about another matter (one of his cabinet picks) but all the same being able to say "I made a mistake". By not enforcing the laws for all these years the U.S. must say "I made a mistake". So, maybe ICE should immediately deport illegals and close the detention centers and those illegals you have seen on TV wanting to return home would be able to do so if deported by ICE.

Dee said...

Here is the problem. The ICE raids have created such an aura of fear, no one will turn themselves in. Most of the fear is due to the detention centers and rightfully so, especially for those detainees from other than Mexico (OTMs).
Detention centers under Bush have held detainees for months/years in very abusive conditions. This has destroyed any ability to believe promises of speedy returns.
Obama/Napolitano have to change this. They have to put in place humane policies and if you turn yourself in, you should be allowed to return immediately. The cost of a ticket is much less than the cost of incarceration.

Joe said...
If picked up by ICE whether it be because an employer wants to break the law in hiring illegals or it is the illegal himself working with a falsified social security number, I do believe the immediate deportation would be a better solution than the detention centers.

Joe said...


You are right, the cost of a ticket home is cheaper than incarceration. But didn't Homeland Security recently offer to send home anyone who would turn themselves in and they in turn would not punish them in any way? Only a few and I mean maybe 10 people turned themselves in. Obama should set up processing centers(not detention centers) and have people turn themselves in with transportation waiting to take these people back home. They could then set up a file on each and everyone and that person would know that if they returned illegally, they would face the consequences whatever they would be. The U.S. made a mistake in letting this illegal problem happen and now they must send these people home regardless of the cost. As you said, a ticket home is cheaper than incarceration.

Dee said...

After the last couple of years of abusive detention centers and ice raids, it make take some time to build trust again. I agree. If people want to return to their home country they should be able to go to a processing center and make arrangements to leave, with no detention center involved.

I also think that others who have been here and established roots in the community and remained crime free should be able to come out of the shadows and apply for legal status.

We also need to reduce the immigration processing backlog. 40% of the 11M (census and ICE say the number is reduced to 11M now) are visa overstays and many of these folks are working with the courts to update their status. We should allow them to continue with their court proceedings.

I think ICE should target the felonious criminals, the drug cartels. That is where the ICE raids should happen. Everyone agrees with this.

Then ICE should also work to stop the flow of weapons (reports say 2000 per day) back into Mexico from the US. This will help curb the border violence and the drug cartels.

green card visa said...

With the amount of border violence and the drug cartel wars going on in Mexico and up near the Southern States, I am surprised the amount of felonious deportations is not on a rise. I am against ICE. I feel the wrong people are being effected by this practice. Though they are illegal immigrants, the purpose is to deport the felonious.

Green Card Visa said...

I have a very hard time believing that there are a large number of Mexicans who desperately want a way back to Mexico. I am sure all they would have to do is turn themselves in, and they would be given a nice free trip to the border. Unless I am terribly mistaken (definitely possible), I strongly doubt this is an issue..

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