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.
The Migration Policy Institute Reports:
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!