Editor’s note: When it comes to immigration – illegal or otherwise – the American people have a right to be concerned. Each week, Liberty Nation author Kelli Ballard examines a contentious issue related to today’s hottest topic.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has stepped up its game in dealing with illegal immigrants, plus sanctuary cities and states that support them. Tired of putting detainers on aliens wanted in suspicion or conviction of dangerous crimes, only to have them ignored, the federal agency has filed subpoenas in Denver and New York City.
“This is not a request – it’s a demand,” said senior ICE official Henry Lucero. “This is a last resort for us. Dangerous criminals are being released every single day in New York.”
ICE Gets Serious
Lucero appeared on Fox & Friends: Weekend to talk about the issue, claiming the agency had requested information on four individuals, three that had been released and one still in custody. “The city of Denver failed to respond to ICE and provide that information,” he said. “So, we’re going to take it to the next level and seek a district court order from a district judge.”
Ryan S. Luby, the public information officer for Denver’s attorney’s office, denied the charge, claiming they honored three of the requests for the released inmates and will cooperate when the fourth is out of custody. “Denver does not comply with subpoenas unless they are Court-ordered or unless they are primarily related to a criminal investigation,” he said. “Our immigration ordinance fully complies with federal law.”
Lucero argued that although the city may comply and notify ICE most of the time, it does so about five minutes before an individual is released, and the notification is sent by fax machine. He complained:
“They’re not allowing us to assume custody in their jails. They’re releasing them to the streets and ICE officers are presented – trying to make arrests outside that jail in sometimes chaotic situations.
“I say it’s another kind of strategy for the city of Denver to mislead the public. That, if they would honor our immigration detainers, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.
“We want to protect the public – not only in Denver but around the nation – from dangerous criminals being released every single day from jails and prisons around this country.”
A New York State of ICE
ICE then turned to New York City and sent subpoenas requesting information on four inmates; one man is wanted in El Salvador for homicide.
The fourth subpoena regards Reeaz Khan, a 21-year-old Guyanese national who was released only to be arrested days later for sexually assaulting and murdering 92-year-old Maria Fuertes. According to the city’s laws, officials have to notify ICE only if the violators have been convicted of a crime, and only if those offenses were violent or serious.
Acting ICE Director Matthew Albence said in a news conference that the city leaders had blood on their hands regarding the elderly woman’s murder. “It is this city’s sanctuary policies that are the sole reason this criminal was allowed to roam the streets freely and end an innocent woman’s life.”
The Perils of Sanctuary
Sanctuary for illegal immigrants isn’t just a danger to American citizens, it is a call to desperate aliens to risk their lives and those of their children to make a treacherous journey to enter a country illegally and try to eke out a life.
Former immigration judge Andrew Arthur wrote in an article titled “Sanctuary Policies Finance Crime and Death, Here and Abroad” that the sanctuary laws fuel human smuggling as well as other criminal organizations. Arthur stated:
“Anything that promotes recourse to smugglers is a bad thing, because smugglers are, simply put, bad people. They are really just in it for the money, and have very little concern for the lives, safety, or well-being of their ‘customers.’
“As importantly, however, money paid to smugglers often makes its way to the very groups whose violent activities abroad have spurred the exodus of those aliens. That money also helps finance those groups in spreading misery and death in the United States.”
It is disturbing, alarming, and frightening how progressives cannot see the danger of refusing to help federal authorities capture suspected dangerous criminals. ICE is fighting back lawfully, but it remains to be seen what will happen in court and if we see a change in how sanctuary cities deal with illegal immigration control.
Read more from Kelli Ballard.