Skip to main content
May 25, 2017New York, NY, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ICE operation targeting criminal aliens, immigration violators nets 186 arrests across Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware

PHILADELPHIA — A total of 186 foreign nationals were arrested over the last 10 days in the states of Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Delaware during a targeted enforcement operation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) aimed at criminal aliens, immigration fugitives, re-entrants, and other immigration violators.

  • 58 of those arrested had criminal convictions.
  • 42 of those arrested have pending criminal charges.
  • 37 had been previously removed from the United States and subsequently illegally re-entered. 
  • Three cases have been accepted for prosecution by U.S. attorney offices for charges including re-entry after removal and document fraud.
  • 26 were immigration fugitives with outstanding final orders of removal issued by a federal immigration judge

Please note that these locally produced figures are preliminary and unofficial.

“ICE officers across a three-state region worked diligently over 10 days and arrested nearly 200 individuals. This operation resulted in multiple arrests of individuals with violent criminal arrests or convictions, as well as individuals in violation of immigration laws,” said ERO Philadelphia Acting Field Office Director Jennifer Ritchey. “Some of these dangerous individuals had been released to the streets instead of being turned over to ICE on our detainers, which compromises the safety of the homeland that ICE officers strive to protect every day. ICE will continue conducting operations to execute its mission and bring to justice those subjects who jeopardize the sanctity of our immigration laws and the safety of our citizens."

Arrest examples include: a 46-year-old convicted criminal alien from Ecuador with pending local charges and a final order of removal from August 2007, a 39-year-old convicted criminal alien from Jamaica with prior criminal convictions for assault and endangering the welfare of children, and a 34-year-old convicted criminal alien from Guatemala who is a registered sex offender. All of these individuals were released from the custody of the Philadelphia Police Department with active detainers in place. Philadelphia is noted as a jurisdiction that publicly limits cooperation with ICE and frequently ignores legally authorized detainers.

The statistics cover the entirety of the agency’s field operations arrests in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Delaware from Monday, May 15, 2017 through Wednesday, May 24, 2017. This week’s enforcement operations were conducted in accordance with routine, daily targeted operations conducted by ICE field operations teams every day to arrest criminal aliens and other individuals who are in violation of our nation’s immigration laws. ICE deportation officers conduct targeted enforcement operations every day in locations around the country as part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to protect the nation, uphold public safety and protect the integrity of our immigration laws and border controls.

ICE does not conduct sweeps, checkpoints or raids that target aliens indiscriminately. This operation targeted public safety threats, such as convicted criminal aliens, gang members, and individuals who have violated our nation’s immigration laws, including those who re-entered the country after being deported and immigration fugitives ordered deported by federal immigration judges. Reports to the contrary create panic and put communities and law enforcement personnel in unnecessary danger. Any groups falsely reporting such activities are doing a disservice to those they claim to support.

Those not being criminally prosecuted will be processed for removal from the United States. Those who have outstanding orders of deportation, or who returned to the United States illegally after being deported, are subject to removal from the country.