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September 7, 2023Houston, TX, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ERO Houston apprehends 12 noncitizens during nationwide operation

HOUSTON — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Houston field office announced Sept. 6 the arrest of 12 noncitizens in the Houston area of responsibility during a nationwide operation that ran from Aug. 4-25. During the operation, ICE officers focused their enforcement efforts on priority fugitive noncitizens and previously removed noncitizens who illegally reentered the U.S. and have been convicted of certain felonies or other criminal offenses including, but not limited to, murder for hire, manslaughter, sex crimes against children, assault with a firearm, battery, domestic violence, drug trafficking, possession of a controlled substance and driving under the influence.

“Many of the noncitizens who were targeted by ERO Houston during this operation are not only repeat offenders of U.S. immigration law; they have also repeatedly violated our nation’s criminal laws,” said ERO Houston Field Office Director Bret Bradford. “By conducting an immigration enforcement operation that prioritized the apprehension of priority fugitive noncitizens and habitual immigration offenders who have been convicted of serious criminal offenses, we were able to remove from the community those noncitizens who presented the greatest threat to national security, public safety and border security.”

Officers prioritized enforcement actions in accordance with the Guidelines for the Enforcement of Civil Immigration Law issued by Secretary Mayorkas on Sept. 30, 2021, and reinstituted on June 28.

Those arrested include:

  • A 45-year-old, twice-removed Mexican national arrested in Houston who was previously convicted twice of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon causing bodily harm in Bell County; illegal reentry in the Western District of Texas; and of driving under the influence — once in Bell County and once in McLennan County.
  • A 51-year-old Mexican national who has been removed from the United States three times and was arrested in Deer Park. The noncitizen has previously been convicted in Harris County of arson, assault of a family member and driving under the influence.
  • A 47-year-old Mexican national arrested in Houston who was previously convicted in Harris County, twice for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon; failure to stop and render aid; evading arrest; and driving under the influence.

ERO officers evaluate individuals on a case-by-case basis, assessing the totality of the facts and circumstances to make informed arrest determinations. Those cases amenable to federal criminal prosecution can be presented to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. ERO also coordinates with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to evaluate the status and processing of relevant immigration applications, as appropriate.

In fiscal year 2022, ERO arrested 46,396 noncitizens with criminal histories. The group had 198,498 associated charges and convictions, including 21,531 assault offenses; 8,164 sex and sexual assault offenses; 5,554 weapons offenses; 1,501 homicide-related offenses; and 1,114 kidnapping offenses.

As one of ICE’s three operational directorates, ERO is the principal federal law enforcement authority in charge of domestic immigration enforcement. ERO’s mission is to protect the homeland through the arrest and removal of those who undermine the safety of U.S. communities and the integrity of U.S. immigration laws, and its primary areas of focus are interior enforcement operations, management of the agency’s detained and non-detained populations, and repatriation of noncitizens who have received final orders of removal. ERO’s workforce consists of more than 7,700 law enforcement and non-law enforcement support personnel across 25 domestic field offices and 208 locations nationwide, 30 overseas postings, and multiple temporary duty travel assignments along the border.

Members of the public can report crime and suspicious activity by calling 866-347-2423 or completing the online tip form. Follow us on X, formerly known as Twitter, @ICEgovERO to learn more about ERO’s missions and operations.

Updated: 09/07/2023