Thomas D. Homan, acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), revealed earlier this week that he plans to deploy thousands more agents and resources to “sanctuary cities” in order to arrest illegal criminals.
He readily admitted the call-to-action is likely to result in increased resistance from mayors and local law enforcement officials who previously refused to cooperate with federal officials and ignored requests to detail criminal illegals for ICE arrest and deportation proceedings.
Homan said in an interview with The Washington Examiner that the more than 300 sanctuary cities, including New York and San Francisco, are “ludicrous” and the agency is currently devising a plan to target those areas with more ICE agents.
“What I want to get to is a clear understanding from everybody, from the congressmen to the politicians to law enforcement to those who enter the country illegally, that ICE is open for business,” Homan told reporters.
Fox News reported that “ICE currently has more than 20,000 employees in 400 offices across the country as well as agents in 46 countries.” However, the agency is actively seeking to recruit an additional 10,000 employees in response to Trump’s directive to crack down on illegal immigration and deport illegal immigrants linked to violent offenses.
While no specific timeline has been announced, an ICE spokesperson told Fox News the agency is concentrating its new resources on “non-cooperative areas,” those that fail to comply with detainer requests when asked to hold a person an additional 48 hours after they are set to be released from jail so federal officials can take them into custody.
The spokesman further noted that “uncooperative jurisdictions have a higher rate of criminal alien releases than in places that honor ICE detainers.”
On Friday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions called out Philadelphia, one of the largest sanctuary cities in the United States, for refusing to cooperate with federal immigration policies.
Sessions stated that such cities choosing to act in defiance “aren’t giving sanctuary to law-abiding people, but criminals.” He cautioned them to “reconsider carefully the harm they are doing to their citizens.”
Lastly, the attorney general pointed out that sanctuary cities, such as Philadelphia, are in violation of the supremacy clause outlined in the Constitution by limiting local law enforcement cooperation with ICE officials.
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