HOUSTON — A man from Poland, convicted of aggravated assault of a child, was deported Aug. 9 and turned over to Polish officials by officers with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO).
Rafal Pietrzak, 44, was encountered by officers assigned to ERO's Criminal Alien Program (CAP) at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice following his 1998 conviction for assaulting a child. He was transferred to ERO May 31, 2012 after serving 14 years in prison.
"This removal is an example of how ICE helps protect public safety by thoroughly screening jails and prisons throughout the nation to identify dangerous criminal aliens," said David W. Jennings, field office director for ERO Houston. "This case is representative of the hard work and service by our ERO officers and our law enforcement partners to accomplish this essential public-safety goal."
ERO is focused on smart, effective immigration enforcement that targets serious criminal aliens who present the greatest risk to the security of our communities, such as those charged with or convicted of homicide, rape, robbery, kidnapping, major drug offenses and threats to national security. ERO also prioritizes the arrest and removal of those who game the immigration system including immigration fugitives or those criminal aliens who have been previously deported and illegally re-entered the country.
Through CAP, ERO seeks to identify potentially deportable aliens incarcerated in jails and prisons throughout the United States. This is accomplished through interviews and reviews of inmates' biographical information. Although ERO initiates removal proceedings against criminal aliens through CAP, these individuals may remain in prison or jail to complete criminal hearings or sentences. Under CAP, ERO uses a risk-based approach to make determinations about the detention and arrest of criminal aliens, with priority given to cases involving individuals deemed to be a security or public-safety threat.