Immigration officials released dozens of murderers, thousands of felons from custody last year

From our "News to make you feel safer" file, we discover that the federal government released 36,000 people from detention last year - illegal immigrants facing deportation - including dozens of murderers and thousands of drunk drivers.

But we should trust the administration to release only "non-violent" criminals from detention.

Washington Times:

Among the 36,000 immigrants whom U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released from custody last year there were 116 with convictions for homicide, 43 for negligent manslaughter, 14 for voluntary manslaughter and one with a conviction classified by ICE as “homicide-willful kill-public official-gun.”

The immigrants were in deportation proceedings, meaning ICE was trying to remove them from the country and could have held them in detention but released them anyway, according to the Center for Immigration Studies, which published the numbers Monday. The Washington Times also obtained the data.

“This would be considered the worst prison break in American history, except it was sanctioned by the president and perpetrated by our own immigration officials,” said Rep. Lamar Smith, Texas Republican. “The administration’s actions are outrageous. They willfully and knowingly put the interests of criminal immigrants before the safety and security of the American people.”

The data raised thorny questions about how the government decides which immigrants to detain and which it will release as they await court hearings and final action on deportation.

Jessica Vaughan, policy studies director at the Center for Immigration Studies, said the numbers undercut the Obama administration’s argument that it is trying to keep its enforcement efforts targeted at dangerous criminals.

“We keep hearing from the administration that they are focused like a laser on enforcement against the worst of the worst, convicted criminals, as their top priority. On the other hand, they are releasing, at a rate of about 100 a day, aliens from their custody with criminal convictions, and many of them are serious criminal convictions,” she said.

ICE claims that "many of those it released were subject to electronic monitoring, posting bond or having to check in with officers." Well, that makes me feel better. Nobody ever jumps bond or fails to report in, right? As for electronic monitoring, those things are impossible to remove, I guess.

Bottom line: If a criminal wants to avoid ICE, it's not that hard to do. The explanation by ICE that they are keeping an eye on these criminals is pathetic.

The problem stems from Supreme Court decisions in the last few years that have made it virtually impossible for the government to deport undesirable illegal aliens. If someone commits a murder in the US, it isn't likely his home country will be welcoming him back. In cases like that, the government can only hold the criminal in immigration detention for 6 months - and then release him back into civilized society.

There's no excuse for this. It's a loophole being exploited by dangerous, violent criminals. And yet immigration reform advocates want to pass a "reform" bill that doesn't even address the problem.




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