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November 19, 2020New York, NY, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ICE removes Salvadoran foreign fugitive released from custody with active detainer

NEW YORK – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement Removal Operations (ERO) officers removed Luis Gerardo Duran-Hernandez, 27, an unlawfully present foreign fugitive, to El Salvador, Nov. 13.

An ICE Air Operations charter flight carrying Duran-Hernandez arrived at the Óscar Arnulfo Romero International Airport in San Salvador, where ERO New York deportation officers transferred custody of the fugitive to Salvadoran government officials.

Duran-Hernandez unlawfully entered the United States in 2014. In July 2017, Salvadoran government officials issued a warrant for his arrest for firearm and drug possession charges.

Duran-Hernandez was initially encountered by U.S. Border Patrol, Oct. 25, 2014, near Rio Grande Valley, Texas, and entered him into immigration proceedings. An immigration judge granted him bond and he was released from custody. In September 2019, an immigration judge ordered Duran-Hernandez's removal in absentia.

On Dec. 30, 2019, New York City Police Department (NYPD) arrested Duran-Hernandez for first-degree robbery: use/threatens use of dangerous instrument; second-degree robbery: aided by another; and second-degree robbery: causes physical injury. ERO New York officers lodged an immigration detainer on Duran-Hernandez that same day with NYPD. Despite the seriousness of the charges, NYPD did not honor the detainer and released Duran-Hernandez from custody notifying ICE.

In October, ERO New York deportation officers arrested the Duran-Hernandez in Flushing, New York, pursuant to the removal order.

"Throughout the last year we've highlighted multiple instances of how the local city government's misguided sanctuary city policies force local law enforcement agencies to release dangerous criminals back into our communities," said Thomas R. Decker, ERO New York field office director. "Protecting public safety is a responsibility that city residents bestow upon local government officials. Forcing law enforcement agencies to release dangerous foreign fugitives like Duran-Hernandez from custody without notifying ICE is not only negligent; it's a betrayal of public trust. If local politicians continue to make New York City a sanctuary for criminals around the world, the people living in this city will suffer the consequences."

About Detainers

ICE relies on the exchange of information with its law enforcement agency partners to access foreign-born inmates at local, state, and federal facilities, and the use of detainers as part of its public safety mission. In many cases, these individuals pose a demonstrable threat to communities.

By lodging detainers against those individuals, ICE makes every effort to ensure that removable aliens are turned over to ICE custody after their criminal detention rather than being released into the community where many abscond or re-offend.

National Fugitive Operations Program

The National Fugitive Operations Program (NFOP) provides policy direction, strategic planning, and operational oversight for ERO's effort to locate, arrest and reduce the population of at-large removable aliens within the U.S.

The NFOP manages budget, resource planning and investigative support to at-large enforcement efforts within the 24 ERO field offices, including 129 Fugitive Operations Teams that prioritize removing aliens who present the greatest threat to national security and public safety, including transnational gang members, child sex offenders and aliens with prior convictions for violent crimes.

The NFOP is also responsible for ICE Probation and Parole Enforcement, the Mobile Criminal Alien Teams, and ERO's Special Response Teams.

In addition, the NFOP plans and directs national enforcement operations to further national security and public safety objectives and provides logistical and operational support to local enforcement operations.

Updated: 02/09/2021