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September 28, 2020Newark, NJ, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ICE Newark, FBI seek information related to missing NJ girl

NEWARK – Dulce Maria Alavez, who was five years old at the time, was last seen September 16, during a family outing to Bridgeton City Park in Cumberland County and later went missing. FBI Newark, in coordination with state and local law enforcement, are investigating the abduction. ICE's Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) wants to reiterate the agency's policy to ensure witnesses feel comfortable to report information to authorities.

"This is a tragic situation for the family and we extend our deepest sympathies to them during this difficult time. Non-U.S. citizens, regardless of their immigration status, should not for one minute be hesitant to provide information that may assist in this investigation. As a law enforcement agency, ICE works closely with our federal, state, and local partners in support of public safety," said ICE ERO Newark Field Office Director John Tsoukaris.

It is not ICE policy to affirmatively target alien victims, witnesses, or plaintiffs for immigration enforcement. Rather, ICE officers are trained to exercise prosecutorial discretion in performing their immigration enforcement duties. Indeed, federal immigration law makes certain forms of immigration benefits available under certain circumstances to individuals who assist law enforcement or who have been victimized by criminal activity. Advocacy groups, NGOs, and politicians are doing a disservice to the victims they are claiming to protect by disseminating inaccurate information asserting that, if victims report a crime to local authorities, they may be arrested by ICE. ICE's policy memo on alien victims and witnesses is available at: ICE Directive 10076.1 Prosecutorial Discretion: Certain Victims, Witnesses, and Plaintiffs,