NEW YORK — Officers from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) New York arrested 45 individuals during a nationwide operation that concluded Sept. 27. Operation ‘Safe City’ focused on cities and regions where ICE deportation officers are denied access to jails and prisons to interview suspected immigration violators or jurisdictions where ICE detainers are not honored.
The operation targeted individuals who have violated U.S. immigration laws, prioritizing aliens with criminal convictions, pending criminal charges, known gang members and affiliates, immigration fugitives and those who re-entered the U.S. after deportation. Individuals with active DACA were not targeted for arrest.
"Law enforcement operations like this should reassure the public that ICE is committed to putting public safety first," said Thomas R. Decker, field office director for ERO New York. “Our nation has a proud history of immigration, but we are also a nation governed by laws specifically designed to protect its citizens and residents. Those who come to the United States to prey upon our neighbors and communities will be prosecuted for their crimes and ultimately returned to their home countries.”
“ICE’s goal is to build cooperative, respectful relationships with our law enforcement partners to help prevent dangerous criminal aliens from being released back onto the streets. Non-cooperation policies severely undermine that effort at the expense of public safety,” he said.
Among those arrested were:
- A citizen of Ecuador who was previously charged with sexual abuse of a minor and convicted of endangering the welfare of a child, and convicted of sexual abuse of a minor under 14. He was previously released from local custody on an active detainer before ICE could assume custody.
- A citizen of the Dominican Republic who was previously charged with menacing, criminal trespass and criminal possession of a weapon. He was previously released from local custody on an active detainer before ICE could assume custody.
- A citizen of Bangladesh who was previously charged with assault, criminal mischief and harassment. He was previously released from local custody on an active detainer before ICE could assume custody.
- A citizen of Colombia with lawful permanent resident status who was convicted of possessing sexual performance by a child. The registered sex offender will remain in ICE custody pending removal from the United States.
- A citizen of Ecuador who was previously charged for possession of a forged instrument and a past conviction of disorderly conduct. He was previously released from local custody on an active detainer before ICE could assume custody.
- A citizen of Mexico who was convicted of Course of sexual conduct against child The victim of this crime was a 7 year old female. The registered sex offender will remain in ICE custody pending removal from the United States.
- A citizen of Guatemala who was convicted of sexual misconduct. The victim of this crime was a 13 year-old female. The registered sex offender will remain in ICE custody pending removal from the United States.
- A citizen of the Dominican Republic who was convicted of sexual misconduct. The victim of this crime was a 14 year-old female. He is currently is ICE custody pending removal proceedings.
Of the 45 individuals taken into custody during this operation for immigration violations:
- 30 had criminal convictions,
- 18 are immigration fugitives;
- 4 are previously deported criminal aliens; and
- 23 are at large aliens with final orders of removal.
Some of the individuals arrested during this operation will face federal criminal prosecutions for illegal entry and illegal re-entry after removal. The arrestees who are not being federally prosecuted will be processed administratively for removal from the United States. Those who have outstanding orders of removal, or who returned to the United States illegally after being removed, are subject to immediate removal from the country. The remaining individuals are in ICE custody awaiting a hearing before an immigration judge, or pending travel arrangements for removal in the near future.
These enforcement actions were spearheaded by ERO deportation officers assigned to the agency’s Fugitive Operations Teams, which are tasked with locating, arresting, and removing individuals who are unlawfully present in the United States. The teams give top priority to cases involving individuals who pose a threat to public safety, including members of transnational street gangs and sex offenders.
The officers who conducted last week’s operation received substantial assistance from ICE’s National Criminal Analysis and Targeting Center and from ICE’s Pacific Enforcement Response Center (PERC). Established in 2015, the PERC operates 24/7 to take appropriate enforcement action against criminal aliens and public safety threats who are booked into local law enforcement custody. The PERC shares leads with ERO field offices nationwide, issuing immigration detainers on high-priority and high-risk criminal aliens.