DETROIT – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers arrested 79 in an enforcement action targeting criminal aliens and individuals who pose a threat to public safety last week. ICE officers made the arrests in the two-state region overseen by the Detroit office, which covers Michigan and Ohio.
Seventy eight of the foreign nationals taken into custody by ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers during the enforcement action, which concluded Thursday, had prior criminal convictions, with the exception of one, who’s being charged federally with reentry after deportation.
Nearly one third had criminal records that included felony convictions for serious or violent offenses, such as child sex crimes, weapons charges and drug violations. All of those arrested represented the agency’s two highest enforcement priorities.
While the vast majority of those taken into custody are originally from Mexico (53), 18 additional countries are represented, including Peru, Vietnam, Canada, United Kingdom, Philippines, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Laos, Bangladesh, India, Bahamas, Bosnia and Herzegovina, El Salvador, Cuba, Honduras, Haiti, Croatia, and Saudi Arabia.
Of the 26 counties where arrests occurred, west Michigan’s Kent County accounted for the largest number of apprehensions (21), followed by Franklin County in Ohio (15). Additional arrests were made in the following Michigan counties: Berrien (6); Van Buren (4); St. Joseph, Allegan, Cass, Kalamazoo, Barry, Ingham, and Lake Counties (2 each) and Gratiot, Mason, Branch, Clinton, Calhoun, Ottawa, (1 each). One arrest occurred in the following Ohio counties: Portage, Richland, Mahoning, Seneca, Summit, Huron, Lorain, and Mercer Counties. Five were arrested in Cuyahoga County.
Five of those detained during last week’s enforcement action are previously removed individuals who are being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for felony reentry after deportation.
ERO coordinates the removal of criminals, foreign fugitives and others ordered deported. Last year alone, ERO removed 315,943 individuals from the United States. ICE is focused on smart and effective immigration enforcement that prioritizes its resources based on those who pose the biggest threat to national security, border security and public safety. ICE’s civil enforcement efforts are based on priorities set by the Secretary of Homeland Security in November 2014.