FREDERICK CO., MD — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) began a four-week training course here today for 36 officers from five law enforcement agencies in Maryland and Northern Virginia which are seeking participation in ICE's 287(g) program.
ICE's 287(g) program provides in-depth training on a variety of enforcement topics including immigration law, intercultural relations, and how to use Department of Homeland Security databases to help positively identify criminals and immigration violators. Once the Memoranda of Agreement (MOAs) are signed by ICE and the local law enforcement approving entity, the trained officers and deputies will be authorized, under ICE supervision, to use the skills learned to initiate removal proceedings on those, encountered during their normal course of duties, found to be here in the country illegally.
Multiple agencies are represented in this second training class of 2008 and the 36 officers will add to the more than 600 officers already trained through the 287(g) program.
- Frederick County Sheriff's Office (MD) - 26 deputies
- Manassas Police Department (VA) - 1 officer
- Manassas Park Police Department (VA) - 1 officer
- Prince William County Police Department (VA) - 6 officers
- Prince William County Sheriff's Office (VA) - 2 deputies
All five agencies will have trained officers and deputies who will work closely with ICE investigators targeting criminal activity. Additionally, the Frederick County Sheriff's Office will have a jail component. The deputies assigned to the detention center would be able to determine the immigration status of those processed through the facility.
"The public benefits from these partnerships because we are combining our law enforcement resources to identify and remove criminals preying on our communities," said Sheriff (ret.) Jim Pendergraph, executive director for ICE's Office of State & Local Coordination. "Not only will the criminal element be removed from our streets, but possibly from the country as well."
"I am looking forward to our new partnership with ICE," said Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins. "This program is a benefit to the citizens of Frederick County and will greatly enhance our efforts in both national security and removing criminal aliens from our community."
The 287(g) program is named after the section of law under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) that authorizes ICE to train local officers to enforce immigration law. The program has received more than $25 million dollars for training and other associated costs under the current FY 2008 budget - up from just over $15 million the program received last fiscal year. Currently, 34 local enforcement agencies spanning the nation have signed MOAs with ICE and more than 600 officers have been trained and certified to enforce immigration law. The officers from those agencies are credited for identifying more than 40,000 with possible immigration violations in the past two years.
The 287g program is only one component under the ICE ACCESS (Agreements of Cooperation in Communities to Enhance Safety and Security) umbrella of services offered for assistance to local law enforcement officers. ICE ACCESS provides local law enforcement agencies an opportunity to team with ICE to combat specific challenges in their communities.
Other ICE ACCESS enforcement options include the creation of local task forces targeting specific challenges like gangs or document fraud, the presence of a Criminal Alien Program (CAP) team in local detention facilities to identify criminal aliens, or training to utilize the ICE Law Enforcement Support Center (LESC) which provides officers the ability to inquire about a person's immigration and criminal history.
Law enforcement agencies interested in reviewing the myriad of enforcement programs under the ICE ACCESS program are encouraged to call their local ICE office or visit www.ice.gov for more information.