Internal Documents Find That “Record” Number Of Illegal Immigrants Deported Is Pure BS – Obama Administration Is “Cooking The Books” With Bogus Numbers

August 24, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Internal documents obtained by the House Judiciary Committee show that the Obama administration has been “cooking the books” in order to reach their “record” number of deported illegal immigrants, chairman Rep. Lamar Smith said Friday.

Based on the internal U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) documents, the number of removals are actually down, the opposite of what the administration has been claiming.

According to the committee’s review, in 2011 officials at the Department of Homeland Security began including the number of individuals removed through the Alien Transfer Exit Program (ATEP) in its annual removal numbers. ATEP is a program which moves apprehended illegal immigrants to another point along the border.

The committee chair claims that counting those individuals as removals is misleading because there are no repercussions for illegal immigrants who are deported through the program, and they can simply try to re-enter.

“It is dishonest to count illegal immigrants apprehended by the Border Patrol along the border as ICE removals,” Smith explained in a statement. “And these ‘removals’ from the Border Patrol program do not subject the illegal immigrant to any penalties or bars for returning to the U.S. This means a single illegal immigrant can show up at the border and be removed numerous times in a single year — and counted each time as a removal.”

Given the new information, the committee’s Republican majority subtracted the ATEP removals from ICE’s deportation totals.

With the ATEP subtraction, in 2011 the estimated 397,000 deportations become approximately 360,000, and the 2012 removals to date drop from about 334,000 to an estimated 263,000, according to the committee estimates. Projections for number of people to be deported by end of the year drops from 400,000 to 315,000 removals.

The new estimates mean that this year the Obama administration’s deportation record is 14 percent below 2008 (which was 369,000) and 19 percent below 2009 (which was 389,000).

The chairman blasted the administration after the discovery, charging the president and administration officials with falsifying their record to meet political ends.

“In a campaign season when Administration officials have made a habit of spinning their numbers to ignore their real record, it’s no surprise that they are doing the same to their immigration record,” Smith said. “It seems like President Obama is trying to trick the American people into thinking he is enforcing our immigration laws. But no amount of spin can cover up the facts. It’s bad enough that the President has neglected to enforce our immigration laws but it’s even worse that his Administration would distort statistics to deceive the American people.”

Smith has been critical of the administration’s immigration record, most recently with Obama’s deferred deportation plan announced in June.

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Yes Another Bad Deal For America From Obama: His Amnesty Plan Provides Safe Harbor In US To Criminal Illegal Immigrants – Felony And Misdemeanor Convictions, Being Here Illegally, And Criminal Use Of Stolen Or Fake Social Security Numbers Forgiven

August 7, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – President Obama’s new immigration plan will provide safe harbor to criminal illegal immigrants and will lead to a “capitulation to lawlessness” that could threaten public safety, Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., said.

Fox News has obtained an internal document detailing how the Department of Homeland Security plans to implement what critics say amounts to an amnesty policy for what could be more than one million illegal immigrants.

According to the documents, illegal immigrants convicted of felonies or misdemeanors under “state immigration laws” may be granted deferred action. Those who have repeatedly entered the United States illegally will also be eligible. And traffic violations would not be considered a misdemeanor.

“It is a direct threat to the rule of law and to the demonstrated desire of the American people for a lawful system of immigration,” Sessions said. “I believe this administration has utilized this policy to basically undermine and negate the ability of the law officers to do what they have been hired and paid to do.”

Sessions told Fox News that according to his understanding of the implementation documents, illegal immigrants who are using stolen or fraudulent Social Security numbers in order to gain employment will not be charged with a crime.

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eMails Show That Deportation Of Obama’s Drunk Driving Illegal Immigrant Uncle Was Delayed – And That Top Immigration Officials Kept Tabs On Mitt Romney’s Take On The Issue

July 16, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Emails exchanged by top U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials confirm that ICE delayed the deportation of President Obama’s uncle, an illegal immigrant, and that they had a close eye on Mitt Romney’s view of the issue.

“Mr. Onyango is subject to a final order of deportation. ICE had granted him a stay of deportation effective until June 5, 2012,” Brian Hale, director of ICE’s public affairs, explained in an April 1, 2012 email to ICE Director John Morton that was obtained by Judicial Watch. “The stay was granted to allow him to attend pending criminal proceedings and to seek reopening of his deportation proceedings, which concluded before the Board of Immigration Appeals on January 29, 1992.”

The emails also show that Hale kept Morton apprised of how Onyango Obama’s case was playing in the media. When Mitt Romney said in December 2011 that he would deport Onyango Obama following his arrest for drunk driving, Hale sent the news report to Morton and other members of ICE leadership.

“It certainly appears that Obama’s uncle is receiving favorable treatment from the Obama administration, which explains that we had to sue in federal court to obtain this material,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “ICE should have deported Onyango immediately, especially after his DUI. We now know that the Obama administration decided not to deport Obama’s uncle despite his being a criminal and being on the lam for at least 20 years.”

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Obama Jobs Program – Help Illegal Immigrants Compete With Americans For American Jobs – Grasping At Straws By Bypassing US Congress And Changing Laws On His Own To Support His Doomed Re-Election Efforts

June 18, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the Obama Administration, in an obvious attempt to boost the President’s flailing reelection campaign, announced that it would bypass Congress and rewrite the nation’s immigration laws.

The Obama administration will stop deporting and begin granting work permits to younger illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children and have since led law-abiding lives. The election-year initiative addresses a top priority of an influential Latino electorate that has been vocal in its opposition to administration deportation policies.

The second sentence of the Associated Press story addresses the true impetus for the policy change; election-year politics. Obama, and today’s Democrat party, see the electorate as a patchwork-quilt of interest groups. Sprinkle enough goodies on certain blocks of voters and they believe they can put together just enough support to win. It can work to a point. But, when the pandering to specific groups undercuts one’s overarching narrative it can erode support in the overall electorate.

Obama’s policy change sends a clear message to Hispanic voters. It also sends a clear message to non-hispanic voters. Namely, Obama has just added millions of workers to the legal labor force. Millions of illegal immigrants will now be able to legally compete with Americans for the very few jobs available. This message will not be lost on working-class voters.

The media loves to obsess over GOP divisions on the immigration issue. What they fail to note, however, is the Democrats are equally divided. (A Breitbart award to the first reporter who goes to a union hall to get reaction to today’s policy change.)

This is unsurprising because Americans are divided on the issue. We’re a nation of immigrants and pride ourselves in being a land of opportunity for those eager to seek the American Dream. We are also, though, a nation of laws and many Americans of all political leanings are uncomfortable with the idea that someone can be “rewarded” by breaking the law. Especially at a time that Americans across the economic spectrum feel acute economic anxiety.

Its a tough issue. Which is why we have a Congress, where the nation’s representatives can deliberate and try to find the right policy path. It isn’t pretty and it often fails. But, that’s how laws our made. We do not enact far-reaching rewrites of our laws by executive fiat. Political expediency doesn’t negate an entire branch of government.

The media will no doubt applaud Obama’s policy reverse on this issue. I’ve already seen a few commentators hail it as a brilliant move to shore up the Hispanic vote. But, the bigger question is, why does Obama need to shore up the Hispanic vote? He won their support overwhelmingly against McCain in 2008. Why does he need to bypass Congress and institute a policy that risks alienating working class voters?

Obama’s entire reelection campaign is based on pandering to specific blocks of voters. Its all he has left. In just three and a half years, he’s lost the ability to talk to the rest of us. He’s lost the ability to communicate with our collective aspirations.

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20% Of Chicago Illinois High School Graduates Are Illegal Immigrants

June 16, 2012

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – In a scene unfolding in many Latino communities throughout the country, the graduation ceremony at Garcia High School in Chicago was especially celebratory Saturday: 20% of the graduating seniors are illegal immigrants who can now put their education to use with work permits authorized by President Obama’s new immigration rules.

“What the president did this week was an amazing gift to me and other students who are undocumented,” graduating senior Andrea Labra, 18, told CNN.

“It’s just an emotional thing to have the same opportunities that other students have and that we didn’t have just because we didn’t have papers,” added Labra, who was born in Mexico and came to the United States at age 5 with her family.

For the class of 2012, the routine tossing of mortarboards in the air was more emotional than anticipated, said classmate Rodrigo Espinoza, 18, who’s also an undocumented immigrant from Mexico. His family brought him to the United States when he was 3 months old.

“It’s so unexpected,” Espinoza said of Obama’s executive order, announced Friday. “It’s like a dream. I can finally do something with my life now.”

Espinoza is going to study bio-engineering on a scholarship at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He wants to find a cure for cancer, he said.

“I’m determined to do it now that I have a chance to do it,” said Espinoza, who will be the first one in his family to go to college. As an honors graduate, a yellow sash topped his blue cap and gown.

“This is going to change my life. It was a life-changing experience for all of us and for my family,” he added about the new immigration rules announced Friday.

Juan Rangel, the leader of Chicago’s largest Hispanic advocacy organization that runs Hector P. Garcia High and 10 other city charter schools, said the White House announcement was “a high note for the graduating ceremony.”

“It’s a timely announcement, and it’s coming at the end of the school year,” Rangel said.

In a measure that a Pew Hispanic Center analysis said could benefit up to 1.4 million children and young adults, the Obama administration said it will offer work permits to illegal immigrants younger than age 30 who came to the United States before age 16 and meet certain criteria.

Participants must be in the United States now and be able to prove they have been living in the country continuously for at least five years.

The centerpiece of the Obama measure grants illegal immigrants a two-year deferral from deportation if they pose no criminal or security threat, and were successful students or served in the military, administration officials said.

The change is part of a Department of Homeland Security effort to target resources at illegal immigrants who pose a greater threat, such as criminals and those trying to enter the country now, officials said.

For many educators and school leaders across the nation, the new program means undocumented immigrant students can come out of the shadows and underground economy of society and participate legally in the U.S. work force, Rangel said.

Equally important, teachers and principals now have an answer to illegal immigrant students who have asked “what’s the point?” about pursuing a higher education, Rangel said.

“At some point these kids ask themselves the question: they work hard, they get the good grades, but what’s the point of going to a university if they can’t work?” said Rangel, chief executive officer of the United Neighborhood Organization, which operates 11 charter schools in Chicago serving 5,500 students. He’s also president of the UNO Charter School Network.

“It’s almost like a leap of faith that we have asked of these kids: Something is bound to happen, and you can’t give up at this point. That leap of faith has been answered, and it opens a whole new horizon for these kids,” he said.

Labra was on the brink of greeting such an opening.

“The emotions that go through me to think that one day when I graduate from college that I might become a doctor or teacher and that I’ll be able to do it without having to go anywhere else — I thought I would have to go back where I came from,” Labra told CNN.

Her parents were equally elated about the graduates’ new possibilities.

“I’m so overwhelmed,” Yolanda Tapia told CNN. “I’m very thankful for everything. We have faith that their dreams are going to be realized.”

“It’s great that the students are going to have this opportunity” to work, said Juan Labra.

Andrea Labra said she’s going to save money for a four-year college by first attending the two-year Harold Washington College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago. She plans on majoring in biology and wants to become a science or biology teacher.

Twenty-one of Garcia High School’s 107 graduates are undocumented immigrants — a figure that’s not too surprising because the school is located in a Mexican immigrant community in the Archer Heights neighborhood on Chicago’s southwest side, Rangel said.

The school is 99% Latino, with a 93% poverty rate, but 97% of the graduates are going to college on academic scholarships totaling $4.7 million, Rangel said.

Obama’s executive order addresses a major concern of the nation’s burgeoning Hispanic community — now the nation’s No. 2 group under the 2010 census — and mimics some of the provisions of a Democratic proposal called the DREAM Act, which has failed to win enough Republican support to gain congressional approval.

Both Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano cautioned Friday that the order is not a pathway to citizenship and urged Congress to pass the DREAM Act.

The Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors — or DREAM — Act would create a path to citizenship for immigrants who entered the United States illegally as children under the age of 16 and have lived in the United States for at least five years; obtained a high school or General Education Development diploma; demonstrated “good moral character”; and haven’t committed crimes that “would make them inadmissible to the country,” according to a White House fact sheet.

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Obama Administration Announces Its Granting Amnesty To Countless Illegal Immigrants – Deportations To Stop

June 16, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The Obama administration announced Friday it will stop deporting illegal immigrants who come to the country at a young age.

The politically charged decision comes as Obama faces a tough reelection fight against Republican Mitt Romney, and Hispanic voters in swing states will play a crucial role in the contest.

The change in policy could allow as many as 800,000 immigrants who came to the United States illegally not only to remain in the country without fear of being deported, but to work legally, according to a senior administration official speaking to reporters Friday.

In a Rose Garden statement, President Obama said the measure would “lift the shadow of deportation” from immigrants, some of who have made “extraordinary contributions” by “serving in our military and protecting our freedom.”

“That we would treat them as expendable makes no sense,” Obama said.

“They study in our schools, play in our neighborhoods … they pledge allegiance to our flag, they are Americans in their hearts and minds … and in every single way but one: on paper.”

Obama was briefly interrupted by a reporter during his statement, a rare breach of protocol that caused the president to lose his temper.

“Excuse me sir, it’s not time for questions, sir, not while I’m speaking,” Obama said.

Later in his statement, Obama, pointing his finger at the reporter in front of the live TV cameras, said: “And the answer to your question, sir — and the next time I prefer you to let me finish by statements before you ask a question — is this is the right thing to do for the American people. I didn’t ask for an argument, I’m answering your question.”

The new policy will not grant citizenship to children who came to the United States as illegal immigrants, but will remove the threat of deportation and grant them the right to work in the United States.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the policy change will apply to those who came to the United States before they were 16 and who are younger than 30 if they have lived here for five years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or served in the military.

A memo from DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano ordering the “prosecutorial discretion with respect to individuals who came to the United States as children” argued that those covered by the order “only know this country as home.” It said these people “lacked the intent to violate the law.”

The new policy will apply to individuals who are already in deportation proceedings, the memo said.

The policy change will accomplish portions of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, legislation that has stalled in Congress amid Republican opposition.

More from The Hill:
♦ Sen. Graham says Obama’s move is ‘possibly illegal’
♦ EPA issues tougher rules on soot
♦ GOP lawmaker: Policy violates oath of office

Obama has a massive lead over presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney among Hispanic voters, but criticism from immigration activists over the administration’s deportation policies has intensified in recent weeks. Earlier this week a government report showed the administration’s attempt to cut back on deportations of law-abiding illegal immigrants has had little effect.

Hispanic voters could be key in the swing states of Florida, Virginia, Colorado and Nevada, and elsewhere.

“It’s a medium-risk, high-reward strategy,” said Democratic strategist Jamal Simmons. “I think you risk angering people who are upset about immigration, yes. But for a president who’s got to win Florida, Nevada, Colorado, it is definitely something that can give the Latino community something to rally around.”

A number of Republicans criticized the move, arguing it could be illegal.

“How can the administration justify allowing illegal immigrants to work in the U.S. when millions of Americans are unemployed?” said Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. “President Obama and his administration once again have put partisan politics and illegal immigrants ahead of the rule of law and the American people.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on Twitter that Obama’s action could be unlawful.

“President Obama’s attempt to go around Congress and the American people is at best unwise and possibly illegal,” Graham said in a Tweet.

“This type of policy proposal, regardless of motivation, will entice people to break our laws,” Graham said in another tweet.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) praised the policy but criticized Obama for going around Congress.

“Today’s announcement will be welcome news for many of these kids desperate for an answer, but it is a short term answer to a long term problem,” the Cuban American Rubio said in a statement. “And by once again ignoring the Constitution and going around Congress, this short term policy will make it harder to find a balanced and responsible long term one.”

Rubio, a possible vice presidential candidate, has been working on his own version of the DREAM Act but has yet to release any legislative language.

The change in policy comes eight months after the Obama administration set an annual record for deportations by removing nearly 400,000 people who were in the country illegally in fiscal 2011.

Of the 396,906 individuals removed, more than half — 216,698 — had been previously convicted of felonies or misdemeanors, which represents a 90 percent increase in the number of criminals deported over fiscal 2008, according to the numbers released by Immigration and Customs Enforcement last October.

A spokesman for Homeland Security said the department would continue to focus its enforcement resources on “the removal of individuals who pose a national security or public safety risk, including immigrants convicted of crimes, violent criminals, felons and repeat immigration-law offenders.”

“Today’s action further enhances the department’s ability to focus on these priority removals,” the spokesman said.

The National Immigration Law Center (NILC), an immigration reform advocacy group, lauded Obama’s announcement on Friday, saying it was evidence of his “true capacity to lead.”

The group then said it was time for Congress to pass the DREAM Act.

“President Obama is showing the nation his true capacity to lead by taking the bold and courageous step to remove the fear of deportation and provide dreamers with the legal means to contribute their full potential to society,” said Marielena Hincapié, the executive director for the group.

“This announcement provides real and much-needed relief now, but it is not enough. President Obama cannot provide these youth with the path to citizenship, which would allow DREAMers to participate in all sectors of civil society. We therefore renew our calls to Congress to pass the DREAM Act.”

NILC is one of the immigrant activist groups that had previously been critical of the administration’s immigration policy.

“We’ve been disappointed by the administration’s record pace of deportations, and DREAMers have been among those deported,” said Adela de la Torre, communications manager for the NILC, in an email to The Hill. “This is why today’s announcement is so important.”

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State College In Denver Colorado Gives Special Rate To Illegal Immigrants – Breaking The Law, But Paying Less Than Legal Out Of State US Citizens

June 8, 2012

DENVER, COLORADO – As far as Sarahi Hernandez is concerned, the only difference between her and every other student at Metropolitan State College of Denver is nine digits.

“A Social Security number — that’s it,” Hernandez said, shortly after Metro State’s board of trustees voted 7-1 Thursday to pass a new tuition rate for illegal-immigrant students like her.

A sophomore from Denver who carries a 3.8 grade-point average, Hernandez said students like her deserve affordable tuition. The new rate, which will go into effect this fall, is $3,358 per semester, which is higher than in-state students, who pay $2,152, and lower than out-of-staters, who pay $7,992.

“We all deserve the chance at a higher education and to become productive members and give back to our community,” she said.

Three criteria must be met to qualify for the new category of tuition. A student must:

• Have attended a Colorado high school for the past three years.

• Have graduated from a Colorado high school or gotten a general equivalency diploma in the state.

• Provide proof they are in good legal standing, other than their undocumented status, and that they plan to seek lawful status when eligible.

Trustee Jack Pogge, the only member of the board to vote against the plan, wondered whether the benefit derived by Metro State from implementing the new rate was great enough, particularly in light of the failure of the state legislature to pass the ASSET bill.

“It’s not our position to do this,” Pogge said.

The ASSET bill would have provided a lower tuition rate for illegal-immigrant students across the state with a GED or diploma from a Colorado high school who could also prove they had been a resident of the state for three years.

That measure had failed to pass the legislature on five previous occasions.

At least two Republican state legislators spoke out publicly this week against the move by Metro State. Rep. Cheri Gerou, a member of the powerful Joint Budget Committee, said the school may be disregarding the will of the legislature.

But state Sen. Pat Steadman, D-Denver, also a member of the JBC, joined Rep. Crisanta Duran, D-Denver, Denver City Councilwoman Judy Montero and almost 20 other people Thursday in public comment supporting the new rate. Only one person spoke in opposition.

Steadman pledged that he had “no intention of seeing anyone retaliate” in the legislature.

“Is Metro going around the actions of the legislature? Probably. But it’s something we enabled them to do,” he said.

In 2010, legislation was passed that gave state colleges and universities broad discretion in coming up with ways to overcome what Steadman called “a horrible job” by the state of providing funding. Funding from the state for higher education has declined by $216 million, or 31 percent, over the past three years.

Based on the state mandate, the colleges banded together and made a unified funding request to the JBC this year, with a breakdown of what each school system would be allocated.

The legislature also has allowed institutions to enact moves such as setting their own tuition rates or creating opportunities to find revenue to help defray their costs.

Metro State president Stephen Jordan said about 300 illegal-immigrant students could end up at his school this fall paying the new tuition rate. Estimates are that another 120 such students are already enrolled in the school.

School officials estimate those students could generate about $884,000 in revenue next fall and more than $2 million in five years.

“You’d be hard-pressed to find any institution who wouldn’t be happy to bring in a new population and increase enrollment by 300 students,” Jordan said.

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US Government Department Rules That Illegal Immigrant’s “Civil Rights” Were Violated When Forest Service Called Border Patrol For Help

June 5, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – A federal department ruled last week that the Forest Service violated a Spanish-speaking woman’s civil rights by calling the Border Patrol to help translate during a routine stop, saying it was “humiliating” to Hispanics and an illicit backdoor way to capture more illegal immigrants.

The ruling by the Agriculture Department’s assistant secretary for civil rights could change policies nationwide as law enforcement agencies grapple with how far they can go in trying to help the Border Patrol while not running afoul of racial profiling standards.

Assistant Secretary Joe Leonard Jr. said calling the Border Patrol automatically “escalates” encounters between Hispanics and law enforcement. He ruled that the Forest Service cannot routinely summon the Border Patrol for assistance and said the agency now must document suspected racial profiling nationwide.

“Given the increased risk of being questioned about immigration status during an interaction with [Border Patrol], the policy of using BP for interpretation assistance is problematic in all situations because it places a burden on [limited English proficient] individuals that non-LEP individuals do not experience,” Mr. Leonard ruled.

The case stems from a 2011 incident in Olympic National Forest in Washington in which a Forest Service officer encountered a Hispanic couple who he said appeared to be illegally harvesting plants on the federal lands.

The couple didn’t speak English and he didn’t speak fluent Spanish and, anticipating that situation, he called the Border Patrol for backup and translating.

But when a Border Patrol agent arrived, the couple fled. The woman was apprehended, but the man jumped into a river to try to escape and drowned. The Border Patrol took the woman into custody but released her several days later, reportedly on humanitarian grounds.

The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project complained to the Agriculture Department, which oversees the Forest Service, and last week’s ruling was the result.

Matt Adams, legal director of the project, said the Border Patrol has been expanding its reach in the Northwest and that has meant more encounters well away from the border.

“They’ve got nothing to do out there as far as their traditional mission, that is enforcing people coming through the border. So in order to justify those expanded numbers, they utilize these other tactics,” Mr. Adams said. “At the end of the day, they can drag in bigger numbers, but it’s not focused on the border.”

His group is challenging other federal agencies’ use of the Border Patrol for translation services, and has filed requests under the Freedom of Information Act seeking logs for how often agents are used for translation.

Last week’s ruling relies in part on an executive order issued during the Clinton administration that says language is interchangeable with national origin, which is protected by federal law.

Groups that push for English-language policies in the U.S. called the new ruling illegal and said the government appeared to be granting special language rights to illegal immigrants.

“The ACLU and illegal alien rights groups are well aware that American courts have never upheld their argument that language and national origin are equal, so they battle out these disputes in private between the agencies in order to come to a settlement where both the courts and the taxpayers are absent from the table,” said Suzanne Bibby, director of government relations for ProEnglish. “This is their new strategy because they know they will lose in the courts.”

A spokeswoman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which oversees the Border Patrol, said the agency is reviewing the ruling but is committed to civil rights.

The union that represents Forest Service employees didn’t return a call seeking comment.

In the proceedings, the Forest Service fought on behalf of its officer. It pointed to an operational memo with the Border Patrol that said they are allowed to back up each other. Since Forest Service employees generally are not trained in Spanish, Border Patrol agents are particularly helpful in backing up encounters with Hispanics, the agency said.

Mr. Leonard’s 40-page ruling underscored deep mutual distrust on both sides in the town of Forks, in northwestern Washington.

Town residents who told the review board that the Forest Service officer involved in the 2011 stop was known for harassing Hispanics and for working with the Border Patrol.

Meanwhile, the Forest Service officer said he felt like the Hispanic community had been “tracing” his movements.

Mr. Leonard was skeptical of the officer’s reasoning and said he found the complaints from the community more convincing.

The ruling doesn’t reveal the names of those involved.

Underpinning the ruling were some key legal arguments: First, that the complainant was entitled to visit the national forest; second, that a law enforcement stop affects the availability of the service provided by the national forest; and third, that the Forest Service must take steps to protect those with limited English, including making them not feel unduly threatened.

“A policy that causes individuals to actually flee from the service being provided does not provide meaningful access,” Mr. Leonard wrote.

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13 Illegal Immigrants Arrested After California Police Stop Phony UPS Delivery Van

May 23, 2012

NILAND, CALIFORNIA – Authorities say it was a special delivery indeed: 13 illegal immigrants stuffed in a phony UPS van.

The U.S. Border Patrol says agents in Southern California stopped the van last Friday as it tried to circumvent a highway checkpoint near Niland, an Imperial Valley community near the Mexican border.

Officials say they found 13 Mexican citizens hiding inside the back of the van, which looked like a legitimate United Parcel Service delivery vehicle.

A 21-year-old U.S. man was arrested on suspicion of smuggling.

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Obama’s Attorney Chokes Again As Federal Government Finds Itself On Thin Ice While Attacking Arizona Immigration Laws – Claims Feds Have Limited Resources And Should Have The Right To Limit Calls About Possible Illegal Immigrants

April 25, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Supreme Court justices took a dim view of the Obama administration’s claim that it can stop Arizona from enforcing immigration laws, telling government lawyers during oral argument Wednesday that the state appears to want to push federal officials, not conflict with them.

The court was hearing arguments on Arizona’s immigration crackdown law, which requires police to check the immigration status of those they suspect are in the country illegally, and would also write new state penalties for illegal immigrants who try to apply for jobs.

The Obama administration has sued, arguing that those provisions conflict with the federal government’s role in setting immigration policy, but justices on both sides of the aisle struggled to understand that argument.

“It seems to me the federal government just doesn’t want to know who’s here illegally,” Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. said at one point.

The Arizona law requires all police to check with federal officials if they suspect someone is in the country illegally. The government argues that is OK when it’s on a limited basis, but said having a state mandate for all of its law enforcement is essentially a method of trying to force the federal government to change its priorities.

Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr. said the federal government has limited resources and should have the right to determine the extent of calls it gets about possible illegal immigrants.

“These decisions have to be made at the national level,” he said.

But even Democratic-appointed justices were uncertain of that.

“I’m terribly confused by your answer,” said Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who went on to say that the federal government can always decline to pick up illegal immigrants when Arizona officials call.

The Obama administration was on its firmest ground when it argued Arizona should not be allowed to impose state penalties such as jail time against illegal immigrants who try to seek jobs.

Federal law chiefly targets employers, not employees, and Mr. Verrilli said adding stiffer penalties at the state level is not coordination. He said Congress’s 1986 immigration law laying out legal penalties was meant to be a comprehensive scheme, and Congress left employees untouched — and Justice Sotomayor seemed to agree.

“It seems odd to think the federal government is deciding on employer sanctions and has unconsciously decided not to punish employees,” she told Paul D. Clement, who argued the case on behalf of Arizona.

A decision is expected before the end of the court’s term this summer.

Only eight justices were present for the arguments. Justice Elana Kagan recused herself from the case, presumably because she was the Obama administration’s solicitor general in 2010, when the law was being debated in Arizona.

Gov. Jan Brewer, who signed the measure into law, was present for the arguments, as were members of Congress who follow the immigration issue: Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California, the top Democrat on the House immigration subcommittee, and Rep. Steve King, an Iowa Republican who has fought for an immigration crackdown.

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Economy And Unemployment So Bad Under Obama That Millions Of Illegal Immigrants Are Heading Home

April 24, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Well, that’s one way to stem the tide of illegal aliens streaming across the border from Mexico.

Jack up unemployment rates to near double digits, dunk America into a double-dip recession and put us so deeply into hock with the Chinese communists that it will take generations for us to recover.

After long enough, living and working and trying to eke out bare survival in America becomes even worse than trying to get by in Mexico.

A new study from the highly esteemed Pew Hispanic Center says the millions of Mexicans who risked their lives crossing the desert to get here to the promised land for a better life have given up on the U.S.

This is no small feat. Have you ever been to Mexico? Not the ritzy beach towns with the gated resorts, but Nuevo Laredo? The dusty streets are filled with bony children selling gum and candy for just a few spare pennies.

Desperate as that little trade may have once seemed to us, at least it has the vibe of the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during the ‘90s. Nothing like that is going on anywhere on this side of the border.

Remember the axiom of big government bureaucrats: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. When, finally, under the crushing weight of taxes and regulation, it stops moving, subsidize it.

So the Mexicans have quit coming to the hopeless part of North America. Canada is just too far to walk.

Or, at least, the few final stragglers who have not kept up with America’s woes and are still sneaking into the U.S. are balanced out by all the illegal Mexicans already here who are now risking their lives to cross the desert to escape the American “dream.”

Now we know why all the politicians in Washington have finally agreed to beef up security and build a fence along the southern border. They’re desperate to keep all the Mexicans from leaving.

That’s right, who would raise their children and mow their lawns and do all of America’s dirty work if all the Mexicans left?

Authors of the Pew report call the stunning shift in migration patterns historic. Not since the Great Depression, they say, has a shift of this magnitude occurred along the U.S.-Mexico border. Not since the Great Depression?

It’s almost enough to make you pine for the good old days of rampant illegal immigration.

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Obama Removing 300 US Ground Troops From US Border With Mexico

April 19, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The Pentagon began flying military helicopters and surveillance planes over the U.S. border with Mexico last month as part of an effort to withdraw all but 300 of the National Guard ground troops who have helped patrol the rugged border since mid-2010.

The 19-month deployment of 1,200 National Guard troops on the southwest border has hurt recruiting efforts and threatened to strain diplomatic relations with Mexico, Brian J. Lepore, a director at the U.S. Government and Accountability Office, told a House homeland security subcommittee hearing Tuesday.

About 12 Blackhawk helicopters and several fixed-wing manned surveillance planes began flying regular patrols over the Rio Grande in Texas for a mission called “Operation River Watch II” in March. The 300 troops will fly the aircraft, or analyze intelligence about smuggling routes in command centers miles from the border.

The Obama administration deployed the National Guard to build access roads for border patrols and to help spot smugglers. The extra manpower was intended to bridge the gap while U.S. Customs and Border Patrol hired an additional 1,200 agents.

In the first year, the National Guard troops helped apprehend 17,887 illegal immigrants and seize 56,342 pounds of marijuana, which was 5.9 percent of all apprehensions and 2.6 percent of marijuana seizures during that time, officials said.

National Guard troops could man watchtowers and stare at closed-circuit television screens of the fence line but were prohibited from making arrests, and officials said morale suffered. The National Guard leadership became concerned that the mission, if extended, could hurt recruitment, according to a GAO report titled “Observations on Costs, Benefits, and Challenges of a Department of Defense Role in Helping to Secure the Southwest Land Border.”

Further use of National Guard troops “could create a perception of a militarized U.S. border with Mexico,” State Department officials told the GAO. The Obama administration has worked with Mexico to strengthen civilian law enforcement agencies to combat drug cartels responsible for thousands of killings.

“We need to have a long-term vision and whole-of-government approach to securing the southwest border that will replace the ad hoc application of resources that has, to date, epitomized our approach to border security,” Rep. Candice Miller, R-Mich., who chairs the subcommittee on border and maritime security, said in a statement.

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With Immigrants Come Third-World Viruses And Disease

April 19, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Measles cases in the United States hit a 15-year high in 2011, with 90 percent of the cases traced to other countries with lower immunization rates, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Thursday.

There were 222 cases of measles in the United States last year, more than triple the usual number, the CDC said. There had been only about 60 cases per year between 2001 and 2010.

No one has died of the disease in the United States since 2008. But approximately 20 million people contract the measles virus each year worldwide, and about 164,000 die from it, said Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of the health agency’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.

The agency said in 2000 that home-grown measles had been eliminated, but cases continued to arrive in the United States from abroad.

There have been more than 25 measles cases reported so far in 2012, most of them imported, the CDC said. The virus can easily enter the country through foreign visitors or Americans traveling abroad who bring the disease back with them.

Measles is highly contagious and is transmitted when an infected person breaths, coughs or sneezes, Schuchat said. The disease can be spread even before an infected person has developed the rash from the virus.

“You can catch measles just by being in a room where a person with measles has been even after that person has left the room,” Schuchat said on Thursday.

Measles cases were found in 31 states in 2011. Last year’s count marked the highest number of cases since 1996, when there were 508 cases in the United States.

All but 22 of the 222 cases last year involved patients who had been infected overseas or caught the virus from someone who had been abroad, the CDC said. The source of the other 22 cases could not be determined.

Many of the cases were traced to Europe, where in some countries immunization rates are lower than in the United States. Europe suffered an outbreak of the disease in 2011, reporting more than 37,000 measles cases.

France, Italy and Spain, popular destinations for U.S. tourists, were among the hardest hit, said Schuchat.

“It’s very important for travelers heading off to Europe to make sure they are up to date on their immunizations and that their children are too,” she said.

Those who have already had measles or have been inoculated are not considered at risk of contracting the virus, the CDC said. The CDC recommends children receive two doses of measles, mumps and rubella vaccine starting at 12-15 months of age.

More than 90 percent of U.S. children have been vaccinated against measles, the CDC said.

“We don’t have to have this much measles,” Schuchat said. “Measles is preventable. Unvaccinated people put themselves and other people at risk for measles and its complications.”

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Homeland Insecurity: Federal Government Impliments Stealth Amnesty For Illegal Immigrants That Provides Path Around Legal Entry Wait And Rewards Those Who Are Here Or Came Here Illegally – Wetbacks Will Get “Unlawful Presence Waivers” If They Have A Relative Here

April 3, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – In its quest to implement stealth amnesty, the Obama Administration is working behind the scenes to halt the deportation of certain illegal immigrants by granting them “unlawful presence waivers.”

The new measure would apply to illegal aliens who are relatives of American citizens. Here is how it would work, according to a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announcement posted in today’s Federal Register, the daily journal of the U.S. government; the agency will grant “unlawful presence waivers” to illegal aliens who can prove they have a relative that’s a U.S. citizen.

Currently such aliens must return to their native country and request a waiver of inadmissibility in an existing overseas immigrant visa process. In other words, they must enter the U.S. legally as thousands of foreigners do on a yearly basis. Besides the obvious security issues, changing this would be like rewarding bad behavior in a child. It doesn’t make sense.

But the system often causes U.S. citizens to be separated for extended periods from their immediate relatives,” according to the DHS. The proposed changes, first announced in January, will significantly reduce the length of time U.S. citizens are separated from their loved ones while required to remain outside the United States during the current visa processing system.

The administration also claims that relaxing the rule will also “create efficiencies for both the U.S. government and most applicants.” How exactly is not listed in the Federal Register announcement, which gives the public 60 days to comment. That’s only a formality since the DHS has indicated that the change is pretty much a done deal.

This appears to be part of the Obama Administration’s bigger plan to blow off Congress by using its executive powers to grant illegal immigrants backdoor amnesty. The plan has been in the works for years and in 2010 Texas’s largest newspaper published an exposé about a then-secret DHS initiative that systematically cancelled pending deportations. The remarkable program stunned the legal profession and baffled immigration attorneys who said the government bounced their clients’ deportation even when expulsion was virtually guaranteed.

In late 2011 a mainstream newspaper obtained internal Homeland Security documents outlining “sweeping changes” in immigration enforcement that halt the deportation of illegal aliens with no criminal records. This also includes a nationwide “training program” to assure that enforcement agents and prosecuting attorneys don’t remove illegal immigrants who haven’t been convicted of crimes.

Judicial Watch has been a front runner in investigating the Obama Administration’s stealth amnesty program by pursuing DHS records concerning “deferred action” or “parole” to suspend removal proceedings against a particular group of individuals. Last spring JW sued DHS to obtain information because the agency ignored a federal public records request that dates back to July 2010.

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Farmers Branch Texas Pissed Away 5 Million In Taxpayer Funds Defending Poorly Written Law Banning Rentals To Illegal Immigrants Within City Limits – Still Fighting In Court Instead Of Rewriting Flawed Law

March 26, 2012

FARMERS BRANCH, TEXAS – Local officials in a Dallas suburb say they plan to continue pushing for a ban on undocumented immigrants renting property within the city limits — a measure that has cost the city $5 million and remains unenforceable due to court challenges.

The fight has pushed Farmers Branch, a quiet collection of bedroom communities and office parks, into the national debate about illegal immigration. Local Latinos say it also has made U.S. citizens and immigrants feel unwelcome in the city, where the Latino population has fallen in recent years.

City officials and law backers argue that undocumented immigrants strain local schools and police resources. They also note that local voters supported an early version of the law five years ago by a 2-to-1 margin.

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“We’re trying to solve a problem that people perceive to have,” Mayor Jack Glancy told The Associated Press. “If the (federal) government would do what it’s supposed to do, we wouldn’t be in the middle of this thing.”

The city council must now decide whether to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court or push for a hearing before the full 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, where a three-judge panel last week upheld a lower court’s ruling blocking the law.

Farmers Branch’s city council, which has never included a Latino, has in recent years declared English to be the city’s official language and resisted efforts to shift voting from an at-large system, which Latinos complain dilutes their voice. The council first passed a renters’ ban in 2006, but replaced it two years later on the advice of its attorneys.

The new law would require all renters to obtain a city license and the city’s building inspector to check the status of any applicant who wasn’t a U.S. citizen. Undocumented immigrants would be denied a renters’ permit, and landlords who knowingly allowed them to stay could have their renters’ license barred.

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A federal judge put that law on hold after landlords and renters sued the city, and courts have continued to block it — most recently on Wednesday by the 5th Circuit.

Similar bans pushed in other cities, most notably Fremont, Neb., and Hazleton, Pa., are in the middle of similar court fights.

A judge recently allowed Fremont to require renters to obtain a permit but stopped the city from revoking the permits if renters were found to be illegal immigrants.

Hazleton’s law, which would sanction business owners for employing illegal immigrants and property owners for renting to them, also is on hold. But backers will get a new hearing because the Supreme Court last year, citing its decision in another case, vacated a federal appeals court’s ruling against the law.

Kris Kobach, a national advocate for tougher immigration laws and Kansas’ secretary of state, has represented Farmers Branch in court and said the city would have a good chance if it continues its case. He noted that much of the legal work has been done, so costs shouldn’t grow much.

Latino civil rights group MALDEF, which is helping fight the Farmers Branch law, said backers of such laws should give up.

“The federal courts have made clear that cities cannot make their own immigration laws and target residents for expulsion simply because of their race or nationality,” Nina Perales, MALDEF’s vice president of litigation, said in a statement.

Despite rallies and heated protests at the time, Ben Robinson, a Farmers Branch councilman, points to the 2007 referendum that showed strong support for the law.

“As far as I know, they still feel that way,” he said.

Glancy emphasized that the city is targeting undocumented immigrants, not documented immigrants or U.S. citizens, noting that the city’s library hosts English classes. Thursday’s class drew 50 people from all over the world — Cambodia, Germany and several Latin American countries — who sounded out nouns and verbs with the help of local volunteers.

The mayor also said that since the law was first passed, the number of car accidents involving uninsured drivers has declined and fewer students have moved in and out of local schools.

Statistics from the Carrollton-Farmers Branch school district, which includes parts of Farmers Branch and surrounding cities, show the percentage of “mobile” students has fallen, though district spokeswoman Angela Shelley said the school does not keep track of students’ immigration status.

A message seeking comment from local police about Glancy’s uninsured drivers claim wasn’t returned.

“Something needed to be done,” Glancy said. “The federal government wasn’t doing it. People were frustrated, and we’re the ones closest to the people.”

A Flawed Immigrant Detention System?

Elizabeth Villafranca sees things differently. Villafranca owns a local Mexican restaurant and moved to Farmers Branch after the push to ban undocumented immigrant residents began. She ran and lost for city council.

Villafranca said she and other U.S.-born Latinos, along with legal immigrants, are more often pulled over by police or threatened by other residents. Though the law never went into effect, Villafranca said, supporters “had the effect they wanted.”

Longtime resident Jack Viveros, a financial planner, said friends and neighbors started asking questions about his background in recent years.

“It’s still a dividing factor,” Viveros said. “It has divided the city dramatically.”

The city has an annual budget of $77 million and has to cut salaries and benefits in recent years, making the $4.5 million spent on immigration-related lawsuits stand out.

Robinson, the longtime councilman, called the legal fees “outrageous” but said he supported continuing the case.

“I think the only way that we’re ever going to have a proper handle on, and control over, illegal immigration in this country is by the states and the cities having the types of laws … necessary to control illegal immigration,” he said.

Viveros said he wanted the case to end so the city could heal.

“When we drop this thing, when it’s finally done and over with, it’s like a relationship with a person,” Viveros said. “When you first break up, you’re hateful and angry and all that kind of stuff. After time, things just become acceptable and things go back to normal.”

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Los Angeles California Police To Ignore State Law To Protect Unlicensed Illegal Immigrant Drivers – Who Are 5 Times More Likely To Be Involved In Fatal Accidents And More Likely To Flee Scene Of A Crime

March 23, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – The Los Angeles Police Department will soon start ignoring California state law, which requires police to impound the vehicles of unlicensed drivers for 30 days.

The majority of unlicensed motorists in Los Angeles are immigrants who are in the country illegally and have low-income jobs. The LAPD says the state’s impound law is unfair because it limits their ability to get to their jobs and imposes a steep fine to get their car back.

As long as drivers can produce some form of I.D., proof of insurance and vehicle registration, they’ll be allowed to keep their car. Police Chief Charlie Beck insists that it’s simply leveling the playing field.

“It’s about fairness. It’s about equal application of the law,” Beck told a Los Angeles TV station earlier this month.

Opponents of Beck’s decision are furious and refer to studies showing unlicensed drivers are among the most dangerous on the road. Indeed, a 2011 AAA study titled “Unlicensed to Kill” finds they are five times more likely to be involved in fatal crashes and more likely to flee the scene of a crime.

The decision has angered Don Rosenberg, a resident of Los Angeles County, who lost his 25-year old son, Drew, in a 2010 accident caused by an unlicensed driver in San Francisco, a city with lax impound policies. The driver, who tried fleeing the scene, had previously been pulled over but was allowed to retrieve his car after a short time, months before the accident.

“It doesn’t matter to me who killed my son– what their nationality was. It was the fact that if the law were followed, he’d be alive today,” Rosenberg told Fox News.

Los Angeles District Attorney Steve Cooley wrote Chief Beck, saying his policy would be “invalid” in light of state law, which states a vehicle “shall be impounded.” But supporters of Beck’s decision say, regardless of the law, he’s doing the right thing for illegal immigrants who cannot yet obtain driver’s licenses here.

“A low-income person doesn’t have the ability to pay the fees after 30 days to get their car back,” said Cardinal Roger Mahony, former Archbishop of Los Angeles and an immigration activist. “Basically, we’re just creating more punitive problems for them.”

The L.A. Police Commission voted in favor of the new policy 4-1 last month. The LAPD says officers will begin implementing it in a matter of weeks. The city attorney has also sided with Beck’s decision.

Immigrant advocates say the controversy highlights the need to provide provisional driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants.

Don Rosenberg says he’d favor that, as long as the police enforce state law by impounding unlicensed drivers’ cars when pulled over. But he believes that the city is pandering to the Latino community and doesn’t hold out hope that the policy will change anytime soon.

“It’s more important that people who are in the country illegally get to drive than it is that people who are here get to live,” he said.

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Obama’s Border Effort Stops “Unsafe Hair Dryers” But Not Illegal Immigrants – And They Don’t Deport Wetbacks They Accidentially Catch

February 15, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – President Obama’s border enforcement officials prevented over 13,000 dangerous hair dryers from entering the country, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) trumpeted today.

“U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seized thousands of hair dryers recently that were determined to constitute a “substantial product hazard” under U.S. law, for failing to have adequate immersion protection,” DHS announced. “The potentially dangerous hair dryers were identified through a nationwide targeting operation by the CBP Import Safety Commercial Targeting and Analysis Center (CTAC).”

CBP seized the hair dryers at the ports of Los Angeles (9,768 hair dryers) and Miami (3,614) because they “lacked shock protection for consumers” in the event of the hair dryers’ immersion in water.

Allen Gina, CBP’s assistant commissioner for public trade, praised the CPB officers who helped seize the hair dryers. “The concerted targeting efforts of CTAC and the vigilance of CBP officers at our ports of entry will help ensure that products like hair dryers are safe for consumers and that substandard product from overseas does not reach store shelves,” he said.

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Stolen Babies: Dumbass US Immigration Authorities And Judges Deport Wetbacks But Keep Their Kids

February 2, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The scars of childbirth were still healing on Amelia Reyes Jimenez’s stomach in 2008 when police came to her Phoenix apartment and took her three-month-old daughter from her arms.

Three and a half years later, Reyes Jimenez and her four children have become statistics in the U.S. crackdown on illegal immigration. Each year thousands of children of undocumented immigrants, like Amelia’s kids, wind up in foster care when their parents are arrested for immigration violations. Some are even adopted by U.S. citizens while their parents are held in federal detention centers or deported back to their native countries.

Reyes Jimenez’s son and three daughters are now living in foster care in Phoenix, and are awaiting possible adoption. Reyes Jimenez is back in Mexico, her parental rights terminated by an Arizona judge, and she cries when she remembers the raid that began it all.

“My daughters were calling, ‘Mommy, my Mommy,'” said Reyes Jimenez. “I felt destroyed. I felt like I would never see my girls, even worse [the baby] was so small. I had just bought her cradle and her stroller.”

A new study by the human rights group Applied Research Center estimates that as of summer 2011 there were at least 5,100 children of detained immigrants in foster care in 22 states.

“It’s clearly a systemic problem,” said Rinku Sen, executive director of ARC. “It happens again and again and again in multiple states, multiple counties, different ICE agents, different detention centers, different judges.” Though the report did not say how many kids had been adopted, ARC did find that detained parents were at risk of permanent separation from their kids because of deportation.

“It’s sort of like saying, okay, you came here as an undocumented immigrant, we’re going to break up your family, we’re going to keep your kids,” said John De Leon, and attorney who represents the Guatemalan and Mexican consulate in immigration cases. He says he has seen the issue grow into a national problem over the last decade.

The police came for Amelia Reyes Jimenez in 2008 to arrest her for one count of child endangerment, a misdemeanor, because she had left her 13-year-old son Cesar, who is severely disabled, alone in her apartment. Jimenez says she thought that Cesar was with her two older daughters and their father, but he had taken the girls to the park and left Cesar home alone.

When she arrived home with baby daughter Erica in her arms, she found the police waiting.

“The only thing they asked was if I was illegal and whether or not I had my papers,” she said. She told them she had no papers. She was handcuffed.

Reyes Jimenez was sent to a detention center an hour outside Phoenix. It would be six months before she had any contact with her children, and nearly two years before she would see them again in person.

“I didn’t know anything about my girls; they didn’t give me any reasons,” she said. “I would ask about them and nobody would answer.”

Reyes Jimenez, who pled guilty to the misdemeanor, then spent nearly two years fighting deportation. Ultimately, she was loaded onto a bus and dropped off in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico, just across the border.

“It’s very sad, very horrible because you’re living a life, and then you come here and it’s very strange,” she said. “I feel empty without my children.”

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East Haven Connecticut Police Officers Dennis Spaulding, David Cari and Jason Zullo and Sgt. John Miller Arrested By Feds For Harassing And Assaulting Illegal Immigrants

January 24, 2012

EAST HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – Four police officers, including the president of the local police union, were arrested Tuesday by the FBI on charges that they assaulted illegal immigrants and covered up abuses in a New Haven suburb where a federal investigation found life was made miserable for Hispanics.

The East Haven officers assaulted individuals while they were handcuffed, unlawfully searched Latino businesses, and harassed and intimidated individuals, including advocates, witnesses and other officers who tried to investigate or report misconduct or abuse the officers committed, according to the federal indictment.

Federal authorities began investigating police in 2009 in East Haven, where the federal probe last month documented a pattern of abuse. The Hispanic population had doubled in the past decade to more than 10 percent of the seaside city’s 28,000 people, but Latino business owners said rough treatment by police drove away many newcomers from Mexico and Ecuador.

The arrests were welcomed by Hispanic business owners in East Haven, including Luis Rodriguez, an immigrant from Ecuador who had complained of harassment by police at his Los Amigos Grocery store.

“They should have to pay, not with many years, but enough to make an example of them. They should not abuse their power,” Rodriguez said. “All I ever wanted was to be left in peace.”

Officers Dennis Spaulding, David Cari and Jason Zullo and Sgt. John Miller, president of the police union, are charged with conspiracy, deprivation of rights and obstruction of justice.

Federal officials say the officers denied Latino residents and their advocates the right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures, the right to not be arrested and detained without probable cause and the right to not be arrested on false and misleading evidence.

“In simple terms, these defendants behaved like bullies with badges,” said Janice Fedarcyk, assistant director of the New York office of the FBI.

Zullo allegedly described taking joy in singling out Latinos, telling Spaulding in a 2008 exchange quoted by the indictment that he liked harassing drivers and referred to “persons who have drifted to this country on rafts made of chicken wings and are now residing” in East Haven.

Miller repeatedly slapped a man handcuffed in his car, while Spaulding threw a man to the ground and repeatedly kicked him while he was handcuffed, according to the indictment. Mayor Joseph Maturo said the four men were arrested around 6 a.m. Tuesday at their homes and at the police department.

Donald Cretella, Miller’s lawyer, said his client has been honored with awards and risked his life in shootouts.

“John Miller is a hero in East Haven,” he said. “He’s decorated. He’s a wonderful family man. Hopefully, we’ll clear his name.”

Frank Riccio Jr., Spaulding’s attorney, said his client is an exemplary police officer.

“At this early stage it’s our position Mr. Spaulding is not guilty of the charges. He’s been nothing but an exemplary police officer. That’s why this is shocking.”

It wasn’t immediately clear who was representing Cari and Zullo.

The indictment says Miller reported to a police department leader described as a co-conspirator who blocked efforts by the police commission to investigate Miller’s misconduct. That refers to Chief Leonard Gallo, according to his attorney, Jon Einhorn, who denied that Gallo blocked the investigation.

“It’s unfair that he is mentioned in this regard when he isn’t even indicted,” Einhorn said.

The indictment also accuses unnamed union leaders of intimidation and interference to protect the officers, including a depiction of a rat posted on a bulletin board and a cartoon saying “You know what we do with snitches?” in a police locker room.

The U.S. attorney for Connecticut, David Fein, said the investigation is still looking into other incidents and individuals. Officials said no more arrests were expected Tuesday.

Maturo, a Republican who took office Nov. 19, recently reinstated Gallo as police chief. Gallo had been on paid administrative leave since federal authorities began investigating in 2010. Maturo said he backs the police.

“I stand behind the police department,” he said. “We have a great police department.”

The U.S. Department of Justice, which has pledged to reach out to the police department to work on reforms, said last month that the department engaged in a pattern of discrimination against Latino residents. Investigators said their probe was complicated by efforts to interfere with witnesses and by police silence.

Nearly half or a third of the drivers pulled over by certain officers were Latino, and the number of Latinos pulled over by certain squads was “extraordinarily high,” said Roy Austin Jr., deputy assistant attorney general for the civil rights division. Latinos who were stopped for minor violations were subjected to harsher punishments, such as arrest or vehicle towing, than were non-Latinos.

The East Haven Police Department of some 50 officers has come under scrutiny previously for civil rights issues. A federal jury ruled in 2003 that a white officer used excessive force and violated the rights of a black man he fatally shot after a chase.

Some officers involved in that case kept their jobs and were promoted, and there was no evidence that anyone received training to prevent similar confrontations in the future, Austin said.

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Nevada Drivers License Clerk Pleads Guilty After Selling 214 Licenses To Illegal Immigrants

December 9, 2011

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – A former Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles clerk has pleaded guilty to a federal bribery charge for accepting thousands of dollars to provide driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants.

The 28-year-old Nancy Brown of Las Vegas entered the plea Tuesday to one count of federal program bribery. She faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine at sentencing March 6.

Prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s office in Nevada say Brown was a front-line clerk at the DMV office on Sahara Avenue in Las Vegas.

Authorities say she used third parties to recruit customers who didn’t have identifying documents, and typically charged $1,500 to $3,000 for each license. A plea agreement says she issued about 214 licenses illegally between February 2010 and April 2011.

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Illegal Immigrants Blamed For 30 Wildfires In Arizona

November 23, 2011

ARIZONA – People entering the U.S. illegally from Mexico are believed responsible for more than one-third of human-ignited wildfires in Arizona over a five-year period, according to a government report that could stoke congressional debate over illegal immigration.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said the Government Accountability Office report supports remarks he made earlier this year after his state was hit hard by wildfires. At the time, McCain was accused of “scapegoating” immigrants.

“I hope this report is a lesson to the activists and public officials that would prefer to engage in partisan character attacks rather than help focus the discussion on the vital need to secure our southern border,” he said in a statement.

Illegal immigrants are believed to have started 30 of 77 fires that were investigated from 2006 through 2010, according to the report by the GAO, the investigative arm of Congress.

Federal land management agencies, however, did not investigate all 422 human-caused fires on federal and tribal land, as called for by federal policy.

“Only 18% of fires on federal land during the five-year study period were actually investigated, and thus, the number and size of fires linked to illegal border crossers may actually be higher,” McCain said.

Of the 30 fires, nine burned more than 100 acres each, 16 burned 10 to 100 acres, and five burned fewer than 10 acres, according to the report.

Efforts to signal for help, provide warmth or cook food appear to be the source of the fires, according to the report. One 2006 fire that burned about 170 acres started after an injured border crosser signaled his need for help. The causes of some of the fires are not known, but the report noted that some occurred in areas known for drug smuggling.

“The presence of illegal border crossers has complicated fire suppression activities in the Arizona border region,” the report said, adding that it has “increased concern about firefighter safety, and, in some instances, has required firefighters to change or limit the tactics they use in suppressing fires.”

Only a limited number of fires were studied because of the lack of investigators, according to the GAO report, which could set off a congressional debate over whether federal agencies are receiving enough money from Congress to prevent fires. The report notes that the percentage of fires caused by human activity in Arizona is “consistent with the national average.”

“In a time of constrained resources and competing needs, we recognize that investigating all human-caused wildland fires in the Arizona border region may not be feasible,” the report notes.

The report urges officials in Arizona to look at a program in California aimed at reducing fires from illegal immigration. Cleveland National Forest has a crew that hikes trails known to be used by illegal border crossers and extinguishes abandoned campfires, according to the report. In 2008 alone, the crew extinguished 101 abandoned campfires that the report said could have grown into larger, more damaging fires.

The GAO study began in 2010, so it didn’t take into account the 2011 fire season, the worst in Arizona history, that McCain said included two fires that destroyed more than 60 homes.

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5 Armed Illegal Immigrants Hunted US Border Patrol Agents In Arizona

November 23, 2011

ARIZONA – Five illegal immigrants armed with at least two AK-47 semi-automatic assault rifles were hunting for U.S. Border Patrol agents near a desert watering hole known as Mesquite Seep just north of the Arizona-Mexico border when a firefight erupted and one U.S. agent was killed, records show.

A now-sealed federal grand jury indictment in the death of Border Patrol agent Brian A. Terry says the Mexican nationals were “patrolling” the rugged desert area of Peck Canyon at about 11:15 p.m. on Dec. 14 with the intent to “intentionally and forcibly assault” Border Patrol agents.

At least two of the Mexicans carried their assault rifles “at the ready position,” one of several details about the attack showing that Mexican smugglers are becoming more aggressive on the U.S. side of the border.

According to the indictment, the Mexicans were “patrolling the area in single-file formation” a dozen miles northwest of the border town of Nogales and — in the darkness of the Arizona night — opened fire on four Border Patrol agents after the agents identified themselves in Spanish as police officers.

Two AK-47 assault rifles found at the scene came from the failed Fast and Furious operation.

Using thermal binoculars, one of the agents determined that at least two of the Mexicans were carrying rifles, but according to an affidavit in the case by FBI agent Scott Hunter, when the Mexicans did not drop their weapons as ordered, two agents used their shotguns to fire “less than lethal” beanbags at them.

At least one of the Mexicans opened fire and, according to the affidavit, Terry, a 40-year-old former U.S. Marine, was shot in the back. A Border Patrol shooting-incident report said that Terry called out, “I’m hit,” and then fell to the ground, a bullet having pierced his aorta. “I can’t feel my legs,” Terry told one of the agents who cradled him. “I think I’m paralyzed.”

Bleeding profusely, he died at the scene.

After the initial shots, two agents returned fire, hitting Manuel Osorio-Arellanes, 33, in the abdomen and leg. The others fled. The FBI affidavit said Osorio-Arellanes admitted during an interview that all five of the Mexicans were armed.

Peck Canyon is a notorious drug-smuggling corridor.

Osorio-Arellanes initially was charged with illegal entry, but that case was dismissed when the indictment was handed up. It named Osorio-Arellanes on a charge of second-degree murder, but did not identify him as the likely shooter, saying only that Osorio-Arellanes and others whose names were blacked out “did unlawfully kill with malice aforethought United States Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry while Agent Terry was engaged in … his official duties.”

The indictment also noted that Osorio-Arellanes had been convicted in Phoenix in 2006 of felony aggravated assault, had been detained twice in 2010 as an illegal immigrant, and had been returned to Mexico repeatedly.

Bill Brooks, U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s acting southwest border field branch chief, referred inquiries to the FBI, which is conducting the investigation. The FBI declined to comment.

The case against Osorio-Arellanes and others involved in the shooting has since been sealed, meaning that neither the public nor the media has access to any evidence, filings, rulings or arguments.

The U.S. attorney’s office in San Diego, which is prosecuting the case, would confirm only that it was sealed. Also sealed was the judge’s reason for sealing the case.

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Department Of Homeland Security Ignores Congressional Request For Information On Illegal Immigrants They Didn’t Bother To Arrest And Deport Before Imposed Deadline

November 2, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – House Republicans are moving to subpoena a list of all immigrants whom the Obama administration has flagged under its secure communities program but failed to arrest for deportation, after the Homeland Security Department missed a congressionally imposed deadline to produce the information this week.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, Texas Republican, said he wants the data so he can see who is among the 300,000 people the administration has deemed too low a priority to detain under new deportation guidelines. He has scheduled a meeting for Wednesday for the immigration subcommittee to vote to authorize the subpoena.

“Why would DHS want to keep this information from the committee?” Mr. Smith will say at the meeting, according to an advance copy of his statement. “If there is nothing to hide, why wouldn’t they provide Congress with these documents? Are administration officials concerned that the requested information will show that illegal and criminal immigrants intentionally released by ICE have gone on to commit more crimes?”

He first requested the information in August, and last week set an Oct. 31 deadline for turning it over. He said Homeland Security initially seemed prepared to cooperate, but the request became mired in recent weeks and this week he said the department told him some of the data belong to the FBI and can’t be turned over without that agency’s consent.

Late Tuesday, a spokesman for the department told The Washington Times, “DHS is fully cooperating with the committee and is in the process of gathering information responsive to the committee’s inquiry.” But he did not comment on what the holdup was.

Congressional subpoenas have been rare, even though Republicans took control of the House after the 2010 elections. This will be the first subpoena issued by the Judiciary Committee, and follows a subpoena that the Energy and Commerce Committee issued this year for documents related to Solyndra, the failed solar power company that received special attention from the Obama administration.

At root, the deportation dispute is about the way the Obama administration has been enforcing immigration laws.

While the Homeland Security Department has set records for total deportations, it has shifted its emphasis away from rank-and-file illegal immigrants and toward those with serious criminal records or repeat immigration-law violators. Of the nearly 400,000 people deported in fiscal year 2011, 216,000 had criminal records.

As a result of the shift, though, illegal immigrants who are working or going to school in the U.S. and not running afoul of other criminal laws are under less of a threat of deportation.

The Obama administration’s deportation policy relies heavily on Secure Communities, a program started under President George W. Bush but dramatically expanded by Homeland Security Secretary Janet A. Napolitano. It takes names and fingerprints that federal, state and local jails send to the FBI and runs them through immigration databases to see who could be eligible for deportation.

A Congressional Research Service report issued late last month found that Secure Communities identified 318,308 foreigners potentially eligible for deportation in the first half of fiscal year 2011, and of those, 73,466 were arrested by immigration authorities.

That means Homeland Security declined to pursue immediate cases against more than 250,000 people who could have been eligible for deportation.

Mr. Smith wants to know who those people are, what crimes they were charged with and why they didn’t rise to the level of deportation.

Homeland Security officials have said that not all of the people who are flagged by Secure Communities are eligible for deportation, because some may have become naturalized citizens.

The Obama administration’s approach to deportation has roiled the national public debate, feeding on incidents like last year’s case in which a Catholic nun was killed in Prince William County by an illegal immigrant who was driving drunk. That driver had been charged with drunken driving twice before and had been put into deportation proceedings, though U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released him into the community and his attorneys said he had been authorized to work while he was going through the process.

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First Amnesty For Illegal Aliens, Now US Border Patrol Stops Checking Busses, Trains, And Airports On Northern Border With Canada

October 29, 2011

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON – The U.S. Border Patrol has quietly stopped its controversial practice of routinely searching buses, trains and airports for illegal immigrants at transportation hubs along the northern border and in the nation’s interior, preventing agents from using what had long been an effective tool for tracking down people here illegally, The Associated Press has learned.

Current and former Border Patrol agents said field offices around the country began receiving the order last month – soon after the Obama administration announced that to ease an overburdened immigration system, it would allow many illegal immigrants to remain in the country while it focuses on deporting those who have committed crimes.

The routine bus, train and airport checks typically involved agents milling about and questioning people who appeared suspicious, and had long been criticized by immigrant rights groups. Critics said the tactic amounted to racial profiling and violated travelers’ civil liberties.

But agents said it was an effective way to catch unlawful immigrants, including smugglers and possible terrorists, who had evaded detection at the border, as well as people who had overstayed their visas. Often, those who evade initial detection head quickly for the nearest public transportation in hopes of reaching other parts of the country.

Halting the practice has baffled the agents, especially in some stations along the northern border – from Bellingham, Wash., to Houlton, Maine – where the so-called “transportation checks” have been the bulk of their everyday duties. The Border Patrol is authorized to check vehicles within 100 miles of the border.

The order has not been made public, but two agents described it to the AP on condition of because the government does not authorize them to speak to the media. The union that represents Border Patrol agents planned to issue a news release about the change Monday.

“Orders have been sent out from Border Patrol headquarters in Washington, D.C., to Border Patrol sectors nationwide that checks of transportation hubs and systems located away from the southwest border of the United States will only be conducted if there is intelligence indicating a threat,” the release says.

Those who have received the orders said agents may still go to train and bus stations and airports if they have specific “actionable intelligence” that there is an illegal immigrant there who recently entered the country. An agent in Washington state said it’s not clear how agents are supposed to glean such intelligence, and even if they did, under the new directive they still require clearance from Washington, D.C., headquarters before they can respond.

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman, Bill Brooks, repeatedly insisted that any shift in enforcement tactics does not amount to a change in policy as local commanders still have authority to aggressively pursue illegal immigrants near the border and at transportation hubs.

“It’s up to the local commander to position his agents the way he wants to position them. What we’ve done is gone to a risk-based posture,” he said.

In a separate statement, the agency said, “Conducting intelligence-based transportation checks allows the Border Patrol to use their technology and personnel resources more effectively, especially in areas with limited resources.”

Shawn Moran, vice president of the union that represents agents, was outraged at the changes.

“Stated plainly, Border Patrol managers are increasing the layers of bureaucracy and making it as difficult as possible for Border Patrol agents to conduct their core duties,” the National Border Patrol Council’s statement said. “The only risks being managed by this move are too many apprehensions, negative media attention and complaints generated by immigrant rights groups.”

The Border Patrol, which patrols outside the official ports of entry handled by customs officers, has dramatically beefed up its staffing since 9/11, doubling to more than 20,000 agents nationally. Along the northern border, the number has jumped from about 300 in the late 1990s to more than 2,200.

At the same time, the number of Border Patrol arrests nationwide has been falling – from nearly 1.2 million in 2005 to 463,000 in 2010, and 97 percent of them at the southern border, according to the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Immigration Statistics. The office cited the recession as a likely factor in the drop.

Along the northern border last fiscal year, the agency made 7,431 arrests. It was not immediately clear how many stemmed from routine transportation checks. The public affairs office for the Border Patrol’s Blaine sector said it doesn’t break down the data that way.

But of 673 arrests in the sector, roughly 200 were from routine transportation checks, according to a Washington state-based Border Patrol agent who has been with the agency for more than 20 years and spoke to the AP.

Until receiving the new directive, the Bellingham office, about 25 miles from the Canadian border, kept agents at the bus and train station, and at the local airport 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Now, the agents have little work to do, the agent said.

The situation is similar in upstate New York, where an agent told the AP – also on the condition of anonymity – that a senior manager relayed the new directive during a morning roll call last month. Since then, instead of checking buses or trains, agents have spent shifts sitting in their vehicles gazing out at Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, where few illegal immigrants cross.

“They’re already bored,” the agent said. “You grab the paper every day and you go do the crossword.”

In the Buffalo sector, where there were more than 2,400 arrests in fiscal 2010, as many as half were from routine transportation checks, the agent estimated.

The change was immediately obvious to Jack Barker, who manages the Greyhound and Trailways bus station in Rochester, N.Y. For the past six years, he said, Border Patrol agents boarded nearly every bus in and out of the station looking for illegal immigrants.

Last month – one day after the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and all of the hype that surrounded it – the agents stopped coming. They haven’t been back since, Barker said.

“What’s changed that they’re no longer needed here?” Barker asked. “I haven’t been able to get an answer from anybody.”

Doug Honig, spokesman for the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington, welcomed the news.

“If the Border Patrol is indeed not boarding buses and trains and engaging in the random questioning of people, that’s a step in the right direction,” he said. “People shouldn’t be questioned by government officials when there’s no reason to believe they’ve done anything wrong.”

Kent Lundgren, chairman of the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers, said the transportation checks have been a staple of the agency for 60 years. His organization has heard from agents around the country complaining of the change, he said.

Gene Davis, a retired deputy chief in the Border Patrol’s sector in Blaine, Wash., emphasized how effective the checks can be. He noted that a check of the Bellingham bus station in 1997 yielded an arrest of Palestinian Gazi Ibrahim Abu Mezer. Abu Mezer skipped out on a $5,000 bond – only to turn up later in Brooklyn, where New York police shot him as he prepared to bomb the city’s subway system. Davis also noted that would-be millennium bomb suspect Ahmed Ressam was arrested at the border in late 1999 when he left a ferry from British Columbia to Washington in a rented car full of explosives.

“We’ve had two terrorists who have come through the northern border here. To put these restraints on agents being able to talk to people is just ridiculous,” Davis said. “Abu Mezer got out, but that just shows you the potential that’s there with the transportation checks.”

The Border Patrol informed officials at the Bellingham airport on Thursday that from now on they would only be allowed to come to the airport “if there’s an action that needs their assistance,” said airport manager Daniel Zenk.

“I’m shocked,” Zenk said. “We welcome the security presence the Border Patrol provides.”

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Department Of Homeland Security Not Helping Alabama Enforce Immigration Law

October 27, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC — The government hasn’t offered to help Alabama put in place a strict immigration law that the Obama administration is challenging in court, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Wednesday.

The administration has sued to block the law, which is considered the toughest state immigration measure in the country.

“We have been working with the Department of Justice in its challenge to that law,” Napolitano told the House Judiciary Committee.

A federal appeals court in Atlanta this month temporarily blocked a part of the law that required public schools to check the immigration status of students. But the court did not bar law enforcement officials from detaining people suspected of being in the country illegally.

A final ruling in the case is not expected for several months.

Alabama Republicans have argued that the law, passed this year by the Republican-controlled Legislature and signed by Gov. Robert Bentley, was necessary to protect the jobs of legal residents.

Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard, R-Auburn, said he’s not surprised by Napolitano’s comments.

“I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised that the federal government won’t help us enforce our laws considering it hasn’t been enforcing its own law for years. That’s why we’re in this mess to begin with. In Alabama, we’re trying to turn off the magnet drawing illegal aliens across the border. The Obama Administration is trying to make the magnet stronger,” said Hubbard.

The Obama administration, which also is challenging a similar law in Arizona, has argued that enforcing immigration law is a federal responsibility.

Advocates against the strict state law have argued that giving immigration enforcement power to local authorities will lead to racial profiling of immigrants, both legal and illegal.

“Common sense law enforcement is about prioritizing resources,” said Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum. “The Department of Homeland Security should work with the Department of Justice to hold Alabama accountable, and prioritize valuable enforcement resources carefully to make sure the most dangerous individuals are detained and deported.”

Napolitano said that while it is too soon to know what impact the new law will have, such worries “should be a real a real concern.”

Similar laws have been passed in Utah, Georgia, South Carolina and Indiana. Civil rights groups have sued to block them.

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Sonoma County California Begins Accepting Mexican Issued ID Cards As Valid Identification

October 24, 2011

SONOMA COUNTY, CALIFORNIA – In Sonoma County, a California driver’s license is accepted as valid identification — but so is a card issued by the Mexican consulate.

Mexican nationals will be able to give their country’s state-issued identification cards as valid ID to Santa Rosa police officers and Sonoma County sheriffs, the Santa Rosa Press Democrat reported.

The idea is to reduce the immigration-related duties of local cops, the newspaper reported. Accepting Mexican consulate-issued cards will reduce the number of people booked into jail for lacking ID, and ergo, will reduce deportations from Santa Rosa County Jail, the newspaper reported.

“Today is a great day,” Sonoma County Assistant Sheriff Lorenzo Dueñas said. “We’re now going to accept the matriculár consular ID.”

Advocates for immigrants point out that almost half of the 921 immigrants turned over to ICE authorities by the jails had not committed a crime, and another third had committed minor offenses, the newspaper reported.
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Mexican nationals will need to apply to the consulate for such a card. The consulate will likely set up shop in the area to both issue cards and instruct people how to do so, the newspaper reported.

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Department Of Homeland Security To Being Amnesty Hearings For Illegal Aliens

October 20, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC –  The Obama administration soon will begin its systematic review of the approximately 300,000 pending deportation cases, separating “high priority” cases involving criminals it wants to deport from “low priority” cases it will drop, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told Congress Wednesday.

The effort marks another point in an evolution of immigration enforcement away from the worksite raids of the Bush administration and towards deportations of illegal immigrants in prisons and jails.

Napolitano said a group of Homeland Security and Justice Department officials will begin a small “pilot” review of immigration cases in “two or three” weeks, and hopes to rapidly expand its efforts.

Under the policy announced last year, federal immigration officials will place the highest priority on deporting illegal immigrants who pose a danger to public safety and national security, while “administratively closing” other cases, taking into consideration a list of factors. Those factors include the person’s length of time in the United States, whether the immigrant arrived as a child, served in the military and has a spouse, child or parent who is a U.S. citizen.

DHS officials say the new policy, which gives immigration officials “prosecutorial discretion,” is similar to policies of previous administrations, and is a “common sense” approach to immigration enforcement.

But critics have blasted the policy, say that by “administratively closing” cases, the Obama administration is giving “amnesty” to illegal immigrants.

The policy is “alarming, especially for those of us who firmly believe in the rule of law,” Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said Wednesday.

Grassley said much is unknown about the policy, including whether illegal immigrants with criminal convictions will be eligible to stay in the country, and what will happen to undocumented immigrants whose cases are closed.

“We want answers. We want transparency and accountability. We want to be part of the process,” Grassley said.

In a recent speech, Napolitano said critics ignore the fact the number of deportations has increased during the Obama administration, and that the composition of that number has “fundamentally changed.” The ranks of deported people “consist of more convicted criminals, recent border crossers, egregious immigration law violators and immigration fugitives than ever before,” she said.

Of the 396,906 individuals removed from the U.S. in fiscal 2011, nearly 55 percent had been convicted of felonies or misdemeanors. That’s an 89 percent increase of criminals from three years ago, DHS said.

Napolitano said DHS has eliminated worksite raids, saying they “did nothing to enhance public safety.” Instead, the Obama administration has focused on prosecuting employers who violate employment laws, she said.

Napolitano said the department’s focus on criminal illegal immigrants is better than “the ad hoc approach where non-criminal aliens are more likely to be removed than criminals.”

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California Governor Jerry Brown Signs Law That Hands Out Tax Dollars To Illegal Immigrant Students

October 8, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Undocumented immigrant students in California will be able to receive state-funded financial aid in 2013 to attend college, under a new law signed Saturday by Gov. Jerry Brown.

The law allows top students who are on a path to citizenship to apply and receive the state aid, the governor said.

About 2,500 students are projected to receive Cal Grants totaling $14.5 million, according to the California Department of Finance. That averages out to $5,800 per student.

The funding amounts to 1% of the overall $1.4 billion Cal Grant program, officials said.

The new law, AB 131, is one of two pieces of legislation known as the California Dream Act and will become effective January 1, 2013, officials said.

“Going to college is a dream that promises intellectual excitement and creative thinking,” Brown said in a statement from Sacramento. “The Dream Act benefits us all by giving top students a chance to improve their lives and the lives of all of us.”

Currently, illegal immigrant students in California must pay resident tuition rates if they graduated from a state high school and are actively seeking to legalize their immigration status, officials said.

The other half of the California Dream Act was signed into law by Brown in July and allows undocumented immigrant students to receive privately funded scholarships administered at public universities and community colleges.

That law, called AB 130, was needed because the University of California and California State University systems avoided giving the private scholarships to their undocumented students, citing vagueness in laws, said the legislative aide to California Dream Act’s author, state Assemblyman Gilbert Cedillo (D-Los Angeles).

Cedillo called Saturday’s signing “historic” and path-breaking for the United States — coming at a time when many states such as Alabama and Arizona are passing aggressive laws targeting undocumented immigrants. Some of those laws are being challenged in court.

“The signing of now both parts of the California Dream Act will send a message across the country that California is prepared to lead the country with a positive and productive vision for how we approach challenging issues related to immigration,” Cedillo said in a statement.

“Today, Ana and Maria Gomez, Jaime Kim, David Cho, Pedro Ramirez — and thousands of other students who are some of the best and brightest in California — have been told by our governor and legislative leaders that you are welcome here, that you have something to contribute, that you can be proud of what you have accomplished and that your talents and ambition will not go to waste,” Cedillo said.

Under AB 131, undocumented immigrant students will be eligible for state Board of Governors fee waivers, student aid programs administered by a college or university, and the state aid Cal Grants program for state universities, community colleges, and qualifying independent and career colleges or technical schools in California, according to Cedillo.

The California Dream Act differs from a proposed federal bill called the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors — or DREAM — Act, which would create a path to citizenship for immigrants who entered the United States illegally as children under the age of 16 and have lived in the United States for at least five years, obtained a high school or General Education Development diploma, and demonstrated “good moral character,” according to a White House fact sheet.

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Hispanic Students Disappear From Alabama Schools After Federal Judge Upholds Majority Of New Immigration Laws

October 2, 2011

BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA – Hispanic students have started vanishing from Alabama public schools in the wake of a court ruling that upheld the state’s tough new law cracking down on illegal immigration.

Education officials say scores of immigrant families have withdrawn their children from classes or kept them home this week, afraid that sending the kids to school would draw attention from authorities.

There are no precise statewide numbers. But several districts with large immigrant enrollments — from small towns to large urban districts — reported a sudden exodus of children of Hispanic parents, some of whom told officials they planned to leave the state to avoid trouble with the law, which requires schools to check students’ immigration status.

The anxiety has become so intense that the superintendent in one of the state’s largest cities, Huntsville, went on a Spanish-language television show Thursday to try to calm widespread worries.

“In the case of this law, our students do not have anything to fear,” Casey Wardynski said in halting Spanish. He urged families to send students to class and explained that the state is only trying to compile statistics.

Police, he insisted, were not getting involved in schools.

Victor Palafox graduated from a high school in suburban Birmingham last year and has lived in the United States without documentation since age 6, when his parents brought him and his brother here from Mexico.

“Younger students are watching their lives taken from their hands,” said Palafox, whose family is staying put.

In Montgomery County, more than 200 Hispanic students were absent the morning after the judge’s Wednesday ruling. A handful withdrew.

In tiny Albertville, 35 students withdrew in one day. And about 20 students in Shelby County, in suburban Birmingham, either withdrew or told teachers they were leaving.

Local and state officials are pleading with immigrant families to keep their children enrolled. The law does not ban anyone from school, they say, and neither students nor parents will be arrested for trying to get an education.

But many Spanish-speaking families aren’t waiting around to see what happens.

A school worker in Albertville — a community with a large poultry industry that employs many Hispanic workers — said Friday that many families might leave town over the weekend for other states. About 22 percent of the community’s 4,200 students are Hispanic.

“I met a Hispanic mother in the hallway at our community learning center this morning, where enrollment and withdrawal happens. She looked at me with tears in her eyes. I asked, `Are you leaving?’ She said `Yes,’ and hugged me, crying,” said the worker, who spoke on condition of anonymity because she was not an authorized spokeswoman.

In Russellville, which has one of the largest immigrant populations in the state because of its poultry plants, overall school attendance was down more than 2 percent after the ruling, and the rate was higher among Hispanic students.

There’s “no firm data yet, but several students have related to their teachers that they may be moving soon,” said George Harper, who works in the central office.

Schools in Baldwin County, a heavily agricultural and tourist area near the Gulf Coast, and in Decatur in the Tennessee Valley also reported sudden decreases in Hispanic attendance.

The law does not require proof of citizenship to enroll, and it does not apply to any students who were enrolled before Sept. 1. While most students are not affected, school systems are supposed to begin checking the status of first-time enrollees now.

The Obama administration filed court documents Friday announcing its plans to appeal the ruling that upheld the law.

The state has distributed to schools sample letters that can be sent to parents of new students informing them of the law’s requirements for either citizenship documents or sworn statements by parents.

In an attempt to ease suspicions that the law may lead to arrests, the letter tells parents immigration information will be used only to gather statistics.

“Rest assured,” the letter states, “that it will not be a problem if you are unable or unwilling to provide either of the documents.”

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Immigrations Officers Finally Get Off Their Asses And Arrest 2900 Wetbacks With Criminal Records In Week Long Raid – 1600 With Violent, Sex, And Drug Related Felony Offenses – Including 151 Convicted Sex Offenders And 42 Gang Members

September 28, 2011

US – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested more than 2,900 convicted criminal aliens over the past week as part of “Operation Cross Check,” a law enforcement sweep that spread across all 50 states and four U.S. territories — the largest-ever ICE criminal alien operation.

The arrests came a month after Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, bowing to pressure from immigration activists, announced that ICE would focus its interior enforcement efforts in the future on serious criminals and delay deportation cases for most non-criminal immigrants who don’t pose a threat to public safety or national security.

ICE described the arrests as part of the Obama administration’s “ongoing commitment to prioritizing the removal of criminal aliens and egregious immigration law violators.”

The seven-day operation involved more than 1,900 ICE officers and agents from all of the agency’s Enforcement and Removal Operations’ 24 field offices, as well as coordination with federal, state and local law enforcement partners throughout the United States.

“The results of this targeted enforcement operation underscore ICE’s ongoing commitment and focus on the arrest and removal of convicted criminal aliens and those that game our nation’s immigration system,” said ICE Director John Morton. “Because of the tireless efforts and teamwork of ICE officers and agents in tracking down at large criminal aliens and fugitives, there are 2,901 fewer criminal aliens in our neighborhoods across the country.”
From left: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton; Gary Mead, executive associate director for Enforcement and Removal Operations; ICE Deputy Director Kumar Kibble and James Dinkins, executive associate director of Homeland Security Investigations, take part in a news conference to announce results of ICE-led enforcement targeting at-large criminal aliens on Sept. 28, 2011, in Washington. (Associated Press)From left: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton; Gary Mead, executive associate director for Enforcement and Removal Operations; ICE Deputy Director Kumar Kibble and James Dinkins, executive associate director of Homeland Security Investigations, take part in a news conference to announce results of ICE-led enforcement targeting at-large criminal aliens on Sept. 28, 2011, in Washington. (Associated Press)

In August, Ms. Napolitano said the agency would proceed on deportation proceedings on a case-by-case basis against illegal immigrants who met certain criteria, such as attending school, having family in the military or having primary responsible for other family members’ care. She told Congress said has the discretion under the law to focus on “priorities” and her department and the Justice Department would review all ongoing cases to see who met the new criteria.

“This case-by-case approach will enhance public safety,” she said at the time. “Immigration judges will be able to more swiftly adjudicate high-priority cases, such as those involving convicted felons.”

All of the 2,901 persons taken into custody over the past week have prior criminal convictions including at least 1,282 who have multiple criminal charges. More than 1,600 of those arrested had felony convictions including manslaughter, attempted murder, kidnapping, armed robbery, drug trafficking, child abuse, sexual crimes against minors, and aggravated assault.

Of the total 2,901 criminal aliens arrested, ICE officials said 42 were members of known street gangs and 151 were convicted sex offenders.

Immigration legislation has been stalled in Congress for years as Democrats and Republicans have sparred over what to include. Republicans generally favor stricter enforcement and a temporary program that would allow workers in the country for some time, but eventually return to their home countries. Democrats want the legislation to include legalization of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants now in the country, and want a future guest-worker program to include a path to citizenship so those workers can stay permanently.

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Federal Judge Upholds Majority Of New Alabama Immigration Laws Targeting Wetbacks

September 28, 2011

ALABAMA – A federal judge on Wednesday said Alabama law enforcement officers can try to check the immigration status of those they suspect are in the country illegally, but blocked other parts of the state’s new crackdown law, which is considered the toughest in the country.

Judge Sharon Lovelace Blackburn generally let stand the parts of the law that allow the state to enforce its own penalties if they match already existing federal laws, such as being in the country illegally. She also upheld a provision requiring schools to determine if students are in the United States legally.

“Nothing in the text of [federal immigration law] expressly preempts states from legislating on the issue of verification of an individual’s citizenship and immigration status,” she wrote. “There is also nothing in the [law] which reflects congressional intent that the United States occupy the field as it pertains to the identification of persons unlawfully present in the United States.”

But the judge did block parts of Alabama’s law that she said go beyond federal code, such as the provision that makes it a state crime for an illegal immigrant to apply for or solicit work, or for someone to transport an illegal immigrant.

The Obama administration had asked the court to block 10 provisions in the law, but the judge agreed to halt just four. The other six she allowed to go into effect while a full trial proceeds.
People gather in front of the Alabama State Capitol for a rally against Alabama’s HB56 on Aug. 28, 2011, in Montgomery, Ala. (Associated Press)People gather in front of the Alabama State Capitol for a rally against Alabama’s HB56 on Aug. 28, 2011, in Montgomery, Ala. (Associated Press)

It marks a major victory for Alabama, which passed the law during its legislative session earlier this year.

Late last month Judge Blackburn had halted the entire law, saying she needed more time to consider the complex arguments and study the issue. But she had promised a ruling by the end of this month.

In upholding enforcement parts of the law, she reached a different conclusion from the one that both federal district and appeals courts reached on Arizona’s similar law.

But in her 115-page opinion Wednesday, Judge Blackburn said as long as state laws or regulations aren’t inconsistent with the intent of Congress, they are allowed.

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Widespread Abuse Of Illegal Immigrants By U.S. Border Patrol Agents – Beatings, Denied Food And Water, Death Threats, Torture, Etc.

September 22, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – Back in 2006, volunteers with No More Deaths, a humanitarian organization dedicated to helping migrants along the Arizona-Mexico border, began hearing the same stories from many who had been in the custody of the U.S. Border Patrol.

Thwarted would-be unauthorized immigrants spoke of being denied water or food during their custody. Others said they were beaten.

The organization started properly documenting these allegations, and the stories added up to nearly 13,000 testimonies whose results were released in a report this week.

The findings went beyond denial of food and water. Migrants held by the Border Patrol spoke of being exposed to extreme heat or cold, sleep deprivation, death threats, and psychological abuse such as blaring music with lyrics about migrants dying in the desert.

A previous report by No More Deaths in 2008 raised the same concerns, but now the number of recorded cases point to a systematic problem.

“By this point, the overwhelming weight of the corroborated evidence should eliminate any doubt that Border Patrol abuse is widespread,” the report states.

The Border Patrol responded with a statement highlighting the fact that respect for detainees is taught in training and consistently reinforced during an agent’s career.

“Mistreatment or agent misconduct will not be tolerated in any way,” the statement said. “We appreciate the efforts of individuals to report concerns as soon as they arise and we will continue to cooperate fully with any effort to investigate allegations of agent misconduct or mistreatment of individuals.”

The interviews were conducted with migrants in Naco, Nogales and Agua Prieta, in Mexico’s Sonora state who were in border patrol custody. Although No More Deaths conducted thousands of interviews, in places like Nogales they could only speak with a fraction of the migrants who crossed. This raised the issue of how representative their sample was, said Katerina Sinclair, a statistical consultant on the report.

But in Naco, a smaller town, they were able to speak with enough migrants to have a representative sample. So the report stays away from making conclusions about percentages except for the subset of interviewees from Naco. But despite the difficulties with such an ambitious project, the authors say that the numbers on their own are cause for concern.

Some 2,981 people reported they were denied food, and more than 11,000 said they were given insufficient food by the Border Patrol, the report states.

The report found that 863 people, many of whom were already dehydrated, were denied water.

There were nearly 6,000 cases of overcrowding reported, and almost 3,000 people had at least some personal belongings not returned, the report states.

In addition, 869 people — including 17 children and 41 teenagers — reported that they were split from their families and deported separately.

No More Deaths also recorded instances of sleep deprivation, death threats, and the forced holding of strenuous positions.

“There’s no question that there is systematic abuse of people in Border Patrol custody,” Danielle Alvarado, one of the report’s authors, told CNN.

Although the research focused on migrants in the Arizona border area, the findings are consistent with reports from Border Patrol sectors across the country, she said.

“This systematic abuse must be confronted aggressively at the institutional level, not denied or dismissed as a series of aberrational incidents attributable to a few rogue agents,” the report states.

In its statement, the Border Patrol responded that, “on a daily basis, agents make every effort to ensure that people in our custody are given food, water, and medical attention as needed.”

“The sad reality is that between what they say on paper and the day-to-day reality there is a big disconnect,” Alvarado said.

Brandon Judd, president of Local 2544, the Tucson branch of the National Border Patrol Council, said that it is No More Deaths’ report that is disconnected from reality.

Border patrol agents are law-abiding citizens who believe in accountability, he said. “If these allegations are true, these are crimes,” he said.

There are 3,000 agents in the Tucson Sector of the Border Patrol, Judd said, and one complaint every two weeks would be considered a lot. Agents also police themselves, he said.

“I can tell you that our agents are the ones who report mistreatment if they see it,” he said.

He was skeptical about the types of questions that were asked and the credibility of the interviewees who were freshly repatriated.

“There’s some glaring weaknesses in the story,” he said.

But Sinclair said that care was taken to make sure that all conclusions were drawn from the Naco sample, which also happened to report the lowest rate of incidents. The questions were also phrased in a way to give credit to the Border Patrol where due.

“We gave them every benefit of the doubt,” she said. But their research shows that “it only gets worse from here.”

“It just doesn’t ring true,” Judd said.

The reports of abuses come as the number of apprehensions along the border has decreased. Increased border enforcement and a slow economic recovery in the United States have reduced the amount of illegal traffic across the border.

Also, No More Deaths reported, the demographics of those being deported have changed. A number of the migrants they interviewed were older and had been in the United States longer. One sample of 100 migrants revealed an average of 14.4 years of living in the United States before deportation.

In light of its report, its authors argue for legally enforceable standards, and a tougher oversight mechanism.

From October of last year to the present, about 115,000 migrants were apprehended by the Border Patrol’s Tucson Sector.

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Crisis Hot Line Opens In Illinois For Wetbacks Facing Deportation

September 19, 2011

ILLINOIS – A new hotline being unveiled Monday aims to help illegal immigrants clear up confusion about deportation.

Modeled after those for the homeless or victims of domestic violence, the “first-in-nation” crisis hotline will serve callers 24 hours a day. It launches Monday afternoon at Jane Addams Hull House.

Volunteers will take calls and direct people facing deportation to lawyers and social service agencies by asking them a checklist of questions to help determine the right course of action.

“In the last five years, 48,330 people have been deported from the Chicago ICE region, leaving an estimated 80,550 children without a parent,” the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights said in a statement.
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“The ICIRR is partnering with 35 social service agencies … to launch the country’s first 24-hour hotline for families facing the crisis of deportation.”

The phone line offers help in English, Spanish, Korean and Portuguese and was paid for by private and individual donations.

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AMNESTY: DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND INSECURITY STOPS DEPORTING WETBACKS!

August 18, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – The Homeland Security Department said Thursday it will halt deportation proceedings on a case-by-case basis against illegal immigrants who meet certain criteria such as attending school, having family in the military or are primarily responsible for other family members’ care.

The move, announced in letters to Congress, won immediate praise from Hispanic activists and Democrats who had chided President Obama for months for the pace of deportations and had argued he had authority to exempt broad swaths of illegal immigrants from deportation.

“Today’s announcement shows that this president is willing to put muscle behind his words and to use his power to intervene when the lives of good people are being ruined by bad laws,” said Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez, Illinois Democrat.

In the letters to Congress, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said her department and the Justice Department will review all ongoing cases and see who meets the new criteria on a case-by-case basis.

“This case-by-case approach will enhance public safety,” she said. “Immigration judges will be able to more swiftly adjudicate high priority cases, such as those involving convicted felons.”

The new rules apply to those who have been apprehended and are in deportation proceedings, but have not been officially ordered out of the country by a judge. Miss Napolitano said a working group will try to come up with “guidance on how to provide for appropriate discretionary consideration” for “compelling cases” in those instances where someone has already been ordered deported.

It was unclear how many people might be affected by the new rules, though in fiscal year 2010 the government deported nearly 200,000 illegal immigrants who it said did not have criminal records.

The Obama administration has argued for months that it did not have authority to grant blanket absolution, and Miss Napolitano stressed that these cases will be treated individually, though the new guidance applies across the board.

In June, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency that handles interior immigration law enforcement, issued new guidance expanding authority to decline to prosecute illegal immigrants. The goal, ICE leaders said, was to focus on their priority of catching illegal immigrants who have also committed other crimes or are part of gangs.

The chief beneficiaries of the new guidance are likely to be illegal immigrant students who would have been eligible for legal status under the Dream Act, which stalled in Congress last year.

“Today is a victory not just for immigrants but for the American people as a whole because it makes no sense to deport Dream Act students and others who can make great contributions to America and pose no threat,” Mr. Gutierrez said. “It is not in our national interest to send away young people who were raised in the U.S. and have been educated here and want only to contribute to this country’s success. “

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat who earlier this year wrote asking Homeland Security to exempt illegal immigrant students from deportation, said the move will free up immigration courts to handle cases involving serious criminals.

Both men said, though, that they will continue to push for legislation that would grant a path to citizenship to illegal immigrants and expands new pathways for more immigrants to come legally in the future.

But groups pushing for a crackdown on illegal immigration said the administration’s move abused the Constitution by usurping a power Congress should have.

“Supporters of comprehensive and targeted amnesties for illegal aliens have consistently failed to win approval by Congress or gain support from the American public,” said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform. “Having failed in the legislative process, the Obama administration has simply decided to usurp Congress’s constitutional authority and implement an amnesty program for millions of illegal aliens.”

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Alabama Now Has Toughest Immigration Law

June 9, 2011

ALABAMA – Republican Governor Robert Bentley on Thursday signed into law a crackdown on illegal immigration in Alabama that both supporters and critics consider the toughest in the nation.

Under the new measure, police must detain someone they suspect of being in the country illegally if the person cannot produce proper documentation when stopped for any reason.

It also will be a crime to knowingly transport or harbor someone who is in the country illegally. The law imposes penalties on businesses that knowingly employ someone without legal resident status. A company’s business license could be suspended or revoked.

The law requires Alabama businesses to use a database called E-Verify to confirm the immigration status of new employees.

“We have a real problem with illegal immigration in this country,” Bentley said after signing the law. “I campaigned for the toughest immigration laws and I’m proud of the Legislature for working tirelessly to create the strongest immigration bill in the country.”

Alabama is the latest state to follow the lead of a controversial measure passed in Arizona last year. The courts blocked implementation of a provision allowing Arizona police to check the immigration status of people there.

But the U.S. Supreme Court recently endorsed a separate Arizona law requiring employers to use E-Verify. The court also ruled that Arizona could suspend or revoke business licenses of those companies that knowingly hire illegal immigrants.

Alabama’s law is unique in requiring public schools to determine, by review of birth certificates or sworn affidavits, the legal residency status of students.

“We fear that it will, in effect, ban the student through fear and harassment,” said Shay Farley, legal director of Alabama Appleseed, a nonprofit policy and legal advocacy organization.

Farley said there is also concern about the increased financial burden on schools to collect the information.

“We definitely believe this is the nation’s toughest immigration law,” said Jared Shepherd, a law fellow with the Alabama American Civil Liberties Union.

The Alabama bill passed the state House of Representatives and Senate by large margins before landing on Bentley’s desk. Republicans took over majority control of both chambers of the Alabama legislature last year for the first time in 136 years.

Civil rights and immigrant rights groups mounted a campaign against the measure, urging voters to contact the governor and ask him to veto the bill.

Some pointed to concerns in Georgia, where farmers have complained that tough new curbs on immigration are creating a shortage of seasonal workers before they even go into effect.

But Gene Armstrong, mayor of Allgood, Alabama, a small community where the Hispanic population has grown to almost 50 percent, is not worried.

“We managed in the past without illegal immigrants to pick the tomatoes here, and I haven’t heard anyone say that if we sent them all home nobody would be left to do that work,” Armstrong said.

“When you have 9 percent unemployment, I think that some people who might not have wanted those jobs previously might reconsider.”

Several states have enacted immigration restrictions, even though the issue is supposed to be the responsibility of the federal government.

Immigration rights advocates have sued Arizona, Utah, Indiana and Georgia to block the measures and are vowing to mount a similar legal challenge against Alabama.

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Illegal Immigrants Get Affirmative Action – Better Treatment Than US Citizens And Legal Immigrants

May 17, 2011

This week, Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley signed a bill to require the state’s public universities to give undocumented aliens — generally illegal — in-state tuition privileges.

The bill, known as the Dream Act, is already the law in ten other states, including California, New York, Texas and Illinois.

But critics argue that the bill will give illegal aliens better treatment than Americans and legal immigrants — thanks to existing diversity policies at universities.

University of Maryland (College Park) computer science Prof. James Purtilo told FoxNews.com that, during his time as an associate dean, he frequently saw admission officers favor students because of their “undocumented” status.

“They favor students with special circumstances. ‘Undocumented alien’ would be one of these special circumstances… They help fill out the diversity picture for the admissions office.”

“It was just the norm,” Purtillo added, “that obviously we need more of these students [undocumented aliens]… ‘this student has a real story to tell’ would be a common thing the admissions officers would say. Or that ‘they’re enriching the College Park experience.'”

University of Maryland spokesman Millree Williams said because admissions staff were either busy with commencement ceremonies or on vacation, he was unable to answer questions about the university’s affirmative action policies as of Tuesday morning.

Gustavo Torres, executive director of Casa de Maryland, which pushed for the bill, said he thought the concern over affirmative action was a non-issue. He noted that in the current system, undocumented immigrants are discriminated against in many ways.

“I don’t see how [they could have an advantage.] Those kids don’t qualify for anything at this point – their only benefit right now is in-state tuition. They can’t get scholarships or anything.”
President Obama also renewed his push last week for a national Dream Act, which would go further and provide a path to citizenship for undocumented students.

“We should stop punishing innocent young people for the actions of their parents,” Obama said at the Mexico-Texas border on Tuesday. “We should stop denying them the chance to earn an education or serve in the military. And that’s why we need to pass the DREAM Act.”

Critics of the Dream acts say that affirmative action is simply built into the system for most illegal immigrants.

“Almost everyone who would benefit from the DREAM act would also benefit from affirmative action,” Steven Camarota, the research director for the think tank Center for Immigration Studies told FoxNews.com.

“A state school wouldn’t say, well, you’re a Dream Act kid, so you don’t get affirmative action,” he added. “I worked in admissions at a small college for a while (at Juniata, Pa.) and the affirmative action stuff just runs on auto pilot. If you check the box, you get put in the [affirmative action] applicant pool. That’s just how it works.

“We have to ask the question: Can you have mass immigration and affirmative action? Does that lead to a just social policy?”

Affirmative action benefits can be substantial. A study of selective universities by Princeton sociologists Thomas Espenshade and Alexandria Radford found that listing one’s race as “Hispanic” instead of ‘White” increased the likelihood of being admitted by the same amount as scoring an extra 130 points on the SAT. Compared to Asians, the study found, Hispanics receive a 240-point advantage.

Has this played out in states that have already passed Dream Acts? California, which has had a Dream Act since 2001, would seem immune due to a state law forbidding universities from using race as a factor in admissions.

University of California spokesman Ricardo Vazquez told FoxNews.com that their policy is to treat “all students equally in the admissions process without regard to their race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin.”

“Residency status is not taken into consideration at all in the admissions process,” he also noted.
However, the data show that Hispanic students admitted to the University of California system had lower GPAs and SAT scores than White or Asian students who came from families with similar incomes. For example, admitted Hispanic students whose parents made more than $120,000/year had an average SAT score of 1749, while Asian students with parents making that much had an average of 1890, 151 points higher. For Whites it was 1844.

A similar pattern holds for GPAs, and for individual schools within the University of California system. Scores are not separated by legal residency status.

Vazquez said the differences in scores were not due to race, but rather “the school context in which an applicant studied, a broad variety of both academic and nonacademic achievements and talents, and a range of family circumstances beyond income and parental education level.”

Back in Maryland, Purtilo said that one reason he is speaking out about his university’s practices is that he feels they are unfair to U.S. citizens.

“Too bad for the very well prepared student, a U.S. citizen and taxpayer in this state, whose parents might once have thought their kids should have a shot at the flagship campus,” he said.

Dream Act supporters question what is wrong with applying the same policies that apply to citizens – even if it’s affirmative action – to undocumented students. And Torres notes that many undocumented immigrants, despite being in the country illegally, do pay taxes.

“[Despite being undocumented] the parents are working anyway — and we actually help those parents have a tax ID number, so they can pay taxes.

“This is about opportunities for people. And we prefer those people to be professionals, because when you are a professional, you pay more taxes — you prosper and make more contributions to society.”

Maryland’s Dream Act differs from the other states’ acts by only granting in-state tuition if the parents of the undocumented student have paid state taxes for at least three years.

“We really have one of the most conservative Dream Acts,” Torres noted, adding that he places his biggest hopes in a national Dream act that includes a path to citizenship.

“We really, really hope it will happen. It is our dream that the state law will be the base for it.”

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Arizona Wants Online Donations And Prison Labor For Fence With Mexico After U.S. Government’s Dismal And Continued Failure To Secure Border

May 9, 2011

PHOENIX, ARIZONA – Arizona lawmakers want more fence along the border with Mexico — whether the federal government thinks it’s necessary or not.

They’ve got a plan that could get a project started using online donations and prison labor. If they get enough money, all they would have to do is get cooperation from landowners and construction could begin as soon as this year.

Gov. Jan Brewer recently signed a bill that sets the state on a course that begins with launching a website to raise money for the work, said state Sen. Steve Smith, the bill’s sponsor.

“We’re going to build this site as fast as we can, and promote it, and market the heck out of it,” said Smith, a first-term Republican senator from Maricopa.

Arizona — strapped for cash and mired in a budget crisis — is already using public donations to pay for its legal defense of the SB1070 illegal immigration law.

Part of the marketing pitch for donations could include providing certificates declaring that individual contributors “helped build the Arizona wall,” Smith said. “I think it’s going to be a really, really neat thing.”

Construction would start “after we’ve raised a significant amount of money first” but possibly as soon as later this year, Smith said.

“If the website is up and there is an overwhelming response to what we’ve done and millions of dollars in this fund, I would see no reason why engineering or initial construction or finalized plans can’t be accomplished,” he said.

The nearly 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border already has about 650 miles of fence of one type or another, nearly half of it in Arizona. The state’s 376-mile border is the busiest gateway for both illegal immigrants and marijuana smuggling.

Department of Homeland Security spokesman Matthew Chandler said federal officials declined to comment on the Arizona legislation.

State Corrections Director Charles Ryan said getting inmate labor to help construct border fencing wouldn’t be a problem.

Minimum-security prisoners already have been used to clear brush in immigrants’ hiding spots near the border and clean up trash and other material dumped by border-crossers, he said.

Work crews of Arizona inmates also have been used to refurbish public buildings, build sidewalks and construct park facilities.

At 50 cents an hour, “we are a relatively inexpensive labor force,” Ryan said. “If we have the funding to do it, we’re capable of doing it.”

Arizona’s existing border security fund is being used to pay for legal costs of defending SB1070 in court, though Brewer’s 2010 executive order creating the fund allows its money to be used for any “border security purpose.” A federal judge has blocked implementation of key parts of SB1070, but Brewer has said she’ll take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary.

The fund through Wednesday has received nearly 44,000 donations totaling more than $3.7 million, collected online and through mailed donations since May 2010. Roughly half of the money has been spent, and Brewer spokesman Matthew Benson said the balance is also needed for SB1070-related legal expenses.

Smith and other supporters of the border-fence legislation haven’t produced any cost estimates for the state project, saying only that the state should be able to do it far more inexpensively than the federal government.

That still could be put the state’s costs in the tens of millions of dollars — or more.

A 2009 report by Congress’ Government Accountability Office said costs of federal fencing work to keep out people on foot ranged from $400,000 to $15.1 million per mile, while costs for vehicle barriers ranged from $200,000 to $1.8 million. Costs varied by such things as types of fencing geography, land costs and labor expenses, the report said.

Brewer signed the Arizona fence bill on April 28, and it will take effect with most other new state laws on July 20.

It took the bill about 2 1/2 months to land on her desk, easily winning approval on party-line votes during a legislative session dominated by budget-balancing work

During committee hearings and floor debates, Republicans said the state has a legal and moral obligation to take action because the federal government hasn’t done enough to secure the border.

“My constituents want this thing fixed and fixed once and for all, and we’re going to do it,” Republican Sen. Al Melvin of Tucson said during a February committee hearing. “People should not be dying in the desert.”

Democrats questioned the project’s feasibility and called it a feel-good distraction from pressing for more comprehensive action on border and immigration issues.

“If we are here to pass symbolic legislation and not really address border security, SB1406 does the job. But people don’t benefit from symbolic legislation,” Democratic Rep. Catherine Miranda of Phoenix said April 18 House vote.

Under the bill, the border fencing work could be done either in conjunction with other border states or by Arizona alone.

Smith said the committee will consider where to build the fence and what kind of fence is needed.

But the eventual choice could be like double- and triple-fence barriers already installed along the border in Yuma County in southwestern Arizona because they appear to block crossings, he said.

Any type of fence would require approval of landowners, but Smith said he expects that to be forthcoming from the state and private land owners, including ranchers who have complained of break-ins and other trouble associated with smugglers and illegal crossings.

Individual ranchers likely will cooperate with the state fencing project, just as they have done with federal officials on placing helipads, watering stations and communications equipment to help officers patrolling the border, an Arizona Cattle Growers Association official said.

However, the 1,100-member association didn’t take a position on the fence bill, said Executive Director Patrick Bray.

“We certainly appreciate the efforts put into this legislation, however the funding is a huge question. It’s an empty solution because we don’t know where the money is going to come from.”

Bray added: “We want to stay focused on the overall border security issue. At this point we are looking for a more comprehensive security approach rather than this pieces that might come to fruition.”

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California’s Incarcerated Criminal Illegal Aliens Jumps 17 Percent To 102,795 – States Spend $1.1 Billion Per Year To Lock Them Up

April 21, 2011

CALIFORNIA – The number of criminal aliens incarcerated in California rose to 102,795 in 2009, a 17 percent increase since 2003, federal auditors reported Thursday.

This isn’t cheap. Nationwide, the Government Accountability Office reports, it costs well over $1.1 billion a year for states to imprison criminal aliens — those who committed a crime after entering the United States illegally. California, moreover, is more expensive than other states. GAO auditors estimated California spends $34,000 to incarcerate a criminal alien for one year; in Texas, it’s only $12,000.

The audit, requested by Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, will provide ammunition for states’ perennial effort to secure more federal reimbursement dollars.

More than one in four of the illegal immigrants imprisoned in California are behind bars for drug offenses. Many are also repeat offenders. GAO auditors say that, based on a survey, criminal alien inmates have been arrested an average of seven different times.

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Obama Hails Those who ‘Came Across the Rio Grande’

April 21, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – “No matter who you are. No matter where you can came from. No matter what you look like. No matter whether your ancestors landed here on Ellis Island or came here on slave ships or came across the Rio Grande, we are all connected. We will rise and fall together. That’s the vision of America I’ve got, that’s the idea of the heart of America,” President Obama said at a fundraiser in San Francisco.

“That’s the idea of the heart of our campaign,” Obama added.

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Former Montgomery Alabama Police Officer Phillip Moultrie Sentenced To 40 Years In Prison After Robbing Illegal Immigrant Motorist

April 14, 2011

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA – When Leonel De La Cruz Alefo was driving to work one day last March in his 1995 Toyota Corolla, he was carry­ing with him the $1,700 in cash that he planned to put toward a newer car.

That money was taken from him — and has yet to be re­turned — when Montgomery police patrol officer Phillip Moultrie pulled him over under the pretext of a traffic stop. Alefo drove on to work that day with no money and no cita­tion.

When Moultrie pulled him over a week later in the same area, near Troy Highway and Virginia Loop Road, Alefo did not have any cash to take. That day, Alefo, who works in the logging industry, drove on to work with a citation for alle­gedly running a red light.

Alefo was one of three His­panic victims who came forward last year after Moultrie, a third-shift pa­ trol officer, pulled them over in the early morning hours on March 16, 20 and 24. Moul­ trie, who pleaded guilty last month, took a total of $2,562.25 from them.

The fourth victim was a confidential informant for MPD who used $1,500 of the city’s money.
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Maryland House Passes Bill To Give Discount College Tuition Rates To Illegal Immigrants

April 8, 2011

ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND — The Maryland House of Delegates passed a bill to allow in-state tuition rates for illegal immigrants in the state’s community colleges.

After those students graduate community college, they would qualify for in-state tuition at the state’s four-year higher education institutions as well.

The bill passed the house 74-66 on Friday evening.

All six Frederick County delegates voted against the bill. That included delegates Kathy Afzali, Galen Clagett, Donald Elliott, Patrick Hogan, Michael Hough and Kelly Schulz.

The bill has already passed the Maryland Senate, where Frederick County senator Ron Young voted in favor of it and Sen. David Brinkley voted against it.

Young and Clagett are the county delegation’s only Democrats.

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U.S. Border Patrol Blows $1 Million On Video Game To Simulate Capture Of Illegal Immigrants

April 7, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – Researchers at a government-funded laboratory have built a giant touchscreen video game that simulates the capture of illegal aliens. In a statement made to Kotaku by an official spokesman, the entire project and underlying systems cost “in the ballpark of $10 million [worth] of internal investments,” with the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection contributing the final $1 million to create their border simulator.
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Alabama Lawmakers Approve Plan To Finally Rid State Of Some Of Its Many Illegal Immigrants

April 6, 2011

BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA – The Alabama state House of Representative passed an Arizona-style crackdown on illegal immigration on Tuesday, despite opposition from Democrats and civil rights groups.

The measure, which passed by 73 votes to 28 on Tuesday evening, would give state and local police broad powers to check the immigration status of people detained on other charges.

It also would require businesses in the state to run checks on new employees through a federal computer database, dubbed an “E-verify,” and use a state verification program to deny public services to illegal immigrants.

The bill will now go to the Alabama Senate for a vote.

“We cannot allow Alabama to become a sanctuary state for illegal immigrants,” Rep. Micky Hammon, a Republican who sponsored the bill, told the House.

The law is similar to the controversial anti-immigration measure passed by Arizona last year that sparked a legal fight and a confrontation with the federal government.

During a vigorous debate, legislators voiced concerns over the additional cost the crackdown would place on already strained state and civic budgets.

“We would be growing the state government at tremendous cost to local governments,” James Busky, a Democrat from Mobile, told the legislature.

Rights groups said they were concerned that it would lead to racial profiling in the state, which has a long history of civil rights violations, and infringe the federal government’s duty to enforce immigration laws.

“This is 100 percent the responsibility of the federal government and states cannot usurp that power,” said Shay Farley, legal director of the nonprofit Alabama Appleseed organization.

“It will cause more problems that it solves,” she added.

In addition to Alabama, Arizona-inspired immigration measures are proceeding through legislatures in Georgia, Indiana, Oklahoma and South Carolina.

In Utah, meanwhile, Republican Governor Gary Herbert last month signed milder immigration legislation that included a guest worker program along with increased police enforcement powers.

But lawmakers in Arizona, Nebraska, Kentucky and Kansas have ditched or killed off tough immigration measures in recent weeks, amid concerns over potentially costly litigation, economic boycotts and the practicality of enforcing the laws.

“At one level, a lot of people realized that many of these reforms are more symbolic than anything else,” Mark Jones, a Rice University political science professor said.

“Some will get blocked in the courts because (immigration) is really a federal prerogative, (and) others because they are viewed as unconstitutional due to the discriminatory or racial profiling aspect,” he added.

Arizona’s immigration law required police to investigate the status of anyone they encounter who is suspected of being in the country illegally, although key parts were blocked by a federal judge before it came into effect in July. The state is appealing the ruling.

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Hispanic Rhode Island Congressmen Luis V. Gutierrez Proposes “Parole-In-Place” (Amnesty) For Illegal Alien Invaders

April 4, 2011

PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND – On Saturday, at an event in providence, Rhode Island, Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-IL) gave a speech to a crowd of hundreds of legal immigrants and illegal aliens in which he criticized the federal government over deportations.

The event was one in a series which Gutierrez has planned across the country to gather stories on how deportation are affecting illegal aliens, in an attempt to convince President Obama to limit removals to only those illegal aliens convicted of serious crimes.

The U.S. Congressman spoke to the group gathered at Oliver Hazard Perry Middle School almost entirely in Spanish.

With the DREAM Act defeated…Yet again, Gutierrez proposed amnesty by another name, this time something he calls a “parole-in-place” program which would allow illegal aliens who had their children in the U.S. to stay here with them. Under the Congressman’s proposal, illegal alien spouses of citizens would also qualify for the program.

Gutierrez told reporters that he plans to deliver written messages from illegal aliens to Obama to convince him to “use the discretion the law already confers on him” to establish a “parole-in-place” program.

Gutierrez also used the occasion to criticize the E-Verify and Secure Communities initiatives.

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U.S. Border Patrol Agents Ordered To REDUCE Or STOP Arrest Of Illegal Immigrants Caught Invading U.S. Along Mexican Border

April 1, 2011

ARIZONA – An Arizona sheriff says U.S. Border Patrol officials have repeatedly told him they have been ordered to reduce — at times even stop — arrests of illegal immigrants caught trying to cross the U.S. border.

Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever told FoxNews.com that a supervisor with the U.S. Border Patrol told him as recently as this month that the federal agency’s office on Arizona’s southern border was under orders to keep apprehension numbers down during specific reporting time periods.

“The senior supervisor agent is telling me about how their mission is now to scare people back,” Dever said in an interview with FoxNews.com. “He said, ‘I had to go back to my guys and tell them not to catch anybody, that their job is to chase people away. … They were not to catch anyone, arrest anyone. Their job was to set up posture, to intimidate people, to get them to go back.”

Dever said his recent conversation with the Border Patrol supervisor was the latest in a series of communications on the subject that he has had with various federal agents over the last two years. Dever said he plans to relay the substance of these conversations when he testifies under oath next month before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

“I will raise my hand to tell the truth and swear to God, and nothing is more serious or important than that,” he said. “I’m going to tell them that, here’s what I hear and see every day: I had conversation with agent A, B, C, D and this is what they told me.”

Dever’s charges were vigorously denied by a commander with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

“The claim that Border Patrol supervisors have been instructed to underreport or manipulate our statistics is unequivocally false,” Jeffery Self, commander of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Joint Field Command in Arizona, said in a written statement.

“I took an oath that I take very seriously, and I find it insulting that anyone, especially a fellow law enforcement officer, would imply that we would put the protection of the American public and security of our nation’s borders in danger just for a numbers game,” he said. “Our mission does not waiver based on political climate, and it never will. To suggest that we are ambiguous in enforcing our laws belittles the work of more than 6,000 CBP employees in Arizona who dedicate their lives to protect our borders every day.”

In recent days, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has said the U.S.-Mexican border is more secure than ever, and Homeland Security officials have used recent statistics to support those claims.

“There is a perception that the border is worse now than it ever has been,” Napolitano said at the El Paso border crossing last week. “That is wrong. The border is better now than it ever has been.”

Dever doesn’t agree.

“Janet Napolitano says the border is more secure than it’s ever been. I’ve been here for 60 years, and I’m telling you that’s not true,” he said.

The sheriff of Santa Cruz County, which borders Dever’s Cochise County to the west, said, “This is news to me,” when asked about reports that border agents were being told to turn illegal immigrants back to Mexico rather than arrest them.

“It comes as a complete surprise that that would be something that’s going around,” Santa Cruz County Sheriff Tony Estrada said. “I meet with Dever all the time and I have great respect for him, so I expect he’d come forward and say what he knows and give the source.

“Not knowing who the source is, how reliable that source is, I really don’t have much of a position,” Estrada said. “I’ve been around a real long time and haven’t heard anything like this. By the same token, you learn new things every day.”

Both sheriffs are elected officials. Dever is a Republican, Estrada, a Democrat.

Others have questioned the methodology and conclusions of the Homeland Security numbers showing the border is more secure.

Mark Hanna, CEO of Real Life Enterprises, a Phoenix-based technology integration and security company, has testified before the Arizona Senate about what he called Homeland Security’s flawed methodology used to compile border security statistics. Hanna maintains the numbers are dangerously misleading.

Hanna, who is currently working on a private/public partnership pilot program along the Arizona border, said he attended a February conference at which Michael Fisher, chief of the United States Border Patrol, and Mark S. Borkowski, assistant commissioner for technology and innovation acquisition, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, showed off charts indicating arrests were decreasing and argued the border was more secure. The charts also showed an increase in marijuana seizures along the border and an increase in Border Patrol agents.

But those charts left out crucial data, Hanna said.

“Since we don’t know how many illegal crossings are occurring, then a decrease in apprehensions might mean that there are fewer illegal crossings, and the border is more secure. But it could also just as easily mean that more illegal border crossings are occurring, and we’re just not catching as many. In order to know how secure the border is, you need to know how many are crossing and the threat level of those who are crossing illegally,” he said.

“It is a very dangerous condition for the secretary of Homeland Security to be using incomplete data to form such a conclusion, and then repeatedly announce these conclusions as fact,” he said.

The Department of Homeland Security did not return repeated requests for comment on Hanna’s specific challenges to the agency’s methodology.

Whatever the methodology, Dever said the numbers don’t accurately describe what’s happening on the ground.

“We do not know who’s crossing that border, but that anyone who wants to can. That’s the message our nation needs to hear, that anyone who wants to can, and is. And our own Department of Homeland Security does not have clear definition of what securing the border even means,” Dever said.

“People are disgusted, the smiles are gone off their face, their general sense of welfare been taken away from them and until that’s returned you can throw all the numbers on the board. … I’ll tell Napolitano, in spite of all of your declarations and efforts to the contrary, things are not safe. No, they are not secure.

“You can use your numbers to say it’s more secure, but it does not define a sense of safety or well-being. You can say it’s more secure, but it’s more dangerous than ever.”

Appeared Here


Feds Admit That 1,825 Miles Of Mexican Border Is Not Under Control Of US Border Patrol – Nothing To Stop Illegal Crossings Between US And Mexico

March 31, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – Richard M. Stana, director of homeland security and justice issues at the Government Accountability Office (which is responsible for “auditing agency operations to determine whether federal funds are being spent efficiently and effectively”), told the Senate Homeland Security Committee yesterday that the federal government can actually prevent or stop illegal entries into the United States along only 129 miles of the 1,954-mile-long U.S.-Mexico border.

That leaves 1,825 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border where the Border Patrol cannot prevent or stop an illegal entry.

Nonetheless, Stana told the committee, the Border Patrol itself says it has established “an acceptable level of control” along 873 miles of the 1,954-mile-long southwest border. This is because of the way the Border Patrol defines “an acceptable level of control” of the border.

“According to Border Patrol,” Stana told the committee, “an acceptable level of border control is established when it has the capability (i.e., resources) to deter or detect and apprehend incursions at the immediate border or after entry.” [Emphasis added.]

In addition to the 129 miles where the Border Patrol says it can actually “deter or detect and apprehend illegal entries” at the border itself, Stana told the committee, there are another 744 miles where the Border Patrol says it has the capability to deter or detect and apprehend illegal entrants after they have entered the county and penetrated U.S. territory to “distances of up to 100 miles or more away from the immediate border.”

The 3,918-mile-long northern border of the United States is virtually wide open, according to Stana’s testimony. The Border Patrol, Stana said, reports that it has established “an acceptable level of control” along only 69 miles of this border and that of those 69 miles there are only 2 miles where the Border Patrol can actually prevent or stop an illegal entry.

Along the remaining, 3,916 miles of the northern border the Border Patrol does not have the capability to deter or detect and apprehend an intruder.

“As we testified in February 2011 about our preliminary observations on this measure, Border Patrol indicated that in fiscal year 2010, 873 of the nearly 2,000 southwest border miles and 69 of the nearly 4,000 northern border miles between Washington and Maine were at an acceptable level of control,” Stana told the committee in his written testimony.

“Within this border security classification, Border Patrol further distinguished between the ability to deter or detect and apprehend illegal entries at the immediate border versus after entry—at distances of up to 100 miles or more away from the immediate border—into the United States,” Stana wrote.

“Our preliminary analysis of these Border Patrol data showed that the agency reported a capability to deter or detect and apprehend illegal entries at the immediate border across 129 of the 873 southwest border miles and 2 of the 69 northern border miles,” Stana testified. “Our preliminary analysis also showed that Border Patrol reported the ability to deter or detect and apprehend illegal entries after they crossed the border for an additional 744 southwest border miles and 67 northern border miles.”

Stana said that in fiscal 2010 “about $11.9 billion [was] appropriated to secure the entire U.S. border (for personnel, infrastructure, and technology).”

Only about a third of this money was spent to secure the border in the vast territories between the official ports of entry (POE). “CBP reported that $3.6 billion was appropriated in fiscal year 2010 for border security efforts between the POEs,” Stana testified.

Overall, the federal government spent $3.72 trillion in fiscal 2010, according to the White House Office of Management and Budget. That means the $11.9 billion the government spent on securing the entire U.S. border equaled 0.3 percent of federal spending and the $3.6 billion the federal government spent on securing the border between the ports of entry equaled about 0.1 percent.

Appeared Here


Elizabeth New Jersey Police Officer Rocco Malgieri Arrested, Charged With Shaking Down Illegal Immigrants For Money In Exchange For Not Turning Them In To Immigration Authorities

March 18, 2011

ELIZABETH, NEW JERSEY – An Elizabeth, N.J. police officer was charged this morning with shaking down undocumented immigrants for money, saying he would not turn them into authorities for being illegal aliens in exchange for payment, announced Union County Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow.

Rocco Malgieri, 43, of Brick Township is charged with 2nd Degree Theft by extortion, 2nd Degree attempted extortion, 2nd Degree Pattern of official misconduct, 3rd Degree Official misconduct, 3rd Degree Bribery and 3rd Degree Soliciting Bribes.

Malgieri, who joined the force 19 years ago, turned himself in to Prosecutors this morning with his attorney Donald DiGioia, and immediately was immediately suspended without pay by the Elizabeth Police Department, said Romankow.

According to the investigation, beginning in February 2011 Malgieri would make unwarranted motor vehicle stops of Hispanic men, question them about their residency status and threaten to report them to immigration officials unless they gave him money, said Romankow. The stops occurred while he was on duty.

Currently there are seven victims who have reported that Malgieri solicited payments from them. The payments ranged from $100 – $150, according to the investigation, Romankow.

Malgieri was released on a $20,000 property bond and is scheduled for a first court appearance on March 30.

Appeared Here


** Bill Passes Oklahoma Senate That Finally Strips Illegal Immigrants Of Our Constitutional Rights – Wetbacks Can Be Arrested Without A Warrant And Property Seized If Used To Commit Immigration Related Crimes **

March 17, 2011

OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA –  — A sweeping anti-illegal immigration bill that allows police to arrest people they suspect are in the country illegally and seize property used to commit immigration-related crimes has passed the Oklahoma Senate.

The Senate voted 29-15 on Wednesday for the bill over the objections of some members who say the plan is unconstitutional and would be detrimental to Oklahoma’s economy.

The bill authorizes law enforcement officers to arrest someone without a warrant, if the officer has “probable cause” to believe the person is in the country illegally.

It also allows police to seize property, like homes or vehicles, used to knowingly harbor or transport illegal immigrants.

Appeared Here


84% Of Illegal Immigrants Arrested On U.S. Soil Never Prosecuted By U.S. Government – Captured Wetbacks Had Chance Of Being Back Home In Time For Dinner

March 17, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – An illegal alien apprehended by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency during the last fiscal year had an estimated 84 percent chance of never being prosecuted, according to figures compiled by the office of Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas).

Culberson submitted the figures for the record during a hearing Wednesday of the House Appropriations subcommittee on homeland security.

Of 447,731 illegal aliens apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol during fiscal year 2010 (which ended last September), only 73,263 (16.4 percent) were prosecuted, according to the submitted data. That means that 374,468 illegal aliens that were taken into custody (83.6 percent) were never prosecuted.

Border Patrol is a component of the Customs and Border Protection agency at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Describing the situation during the hearing, Culberson said that those who were not prosecuted “had a chance of being home in time for dinner,” after being in custody for a few hours.

He asserted that criminal consequences for those involved in illegal cross-border activity was “the key” to securing the nation’s border with Mexico.

The Texas Republican suggested that Operation Streamline, a program that fast-tracks prosecution and deportations of illegal immigrants crossing the border, should be applied to the entire southwest border.

According to CBP, the operation “targets illegal immigrants apprehended in specific enforcement zones for immediate prosecution for illegal entry. Violators face punishment of up to 180 days in jail. Additionally, deportation procedures are initiated to formally remove the individual once they complete their jail sentence.”

“This is the key,” said Culberson. “If we enforce existing law, impose real consequences and existing laws – up to six months in jail criminal prosecution depending on the circumstances.”

But CBP chief Michael Fisher, who testified during the hearing, disagreed that Operation Streamline was the sole key to securing the border.

There were “a lot of other variables” at play, he said, citing “different judicial districts” with varying capacities to handle the prosecution load.

Culberson maintained, however, that the only consequence “that really has an impact is the criminal prosecution.”

CBP divides the almost 2,000-mile-long U.S.-Mexico border into nine sectors. Running from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf Coast they are, in order, San Diego, El Centro, Yuma, Tucson, El Paso, Marfa, Del Rio, Laredo, and Rio Grande.

According to Culberson’s figures, of the 212,202 apprehensions along Arizona’s Tucson sector – which is where most of the apprehensions took place in FY2010 – only 30,748 (14.5 percent) led to prosecutions.

Testifying before the House Homeland Security Committee on Feb. 9, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano told lawmakers that her “top priority in terms of effective control is the Tucson sector of the southwest border.”

Appeared Here


Texas Bill Calls For Wetbacks To Be Dumped At Offices Of U.S. Senators Or Representatives

February 22, 2011

TEXAS – This should get their attention.

A measure filed by State Rep. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) would allow any law enforcement agency that has custody of an illegal immigrant to take the illegal to ‘the office of a U.S. Senator or Representative’ and leave them there.

1200 WOAI news reports the measure also allows county sheriff’s deputies or city police officers to ‘request an agent or employee of the United States Senator or United States Representative to sign a document acknowledging the release or discharge of the illegal immigrant at the senator’s or representative’s office.

The measure covers individuals who are ‘not a citizen or national of the United States’ and who is ‘unlawfully present in the United States.’

Kolkhorst concedes the measure is a ‘cry for help’ to convince federal officials to secure the border, but she says she is serious about getting the measure approved by the Legislature.

The measure doesn’t specify what the Senator or Congressman is supposed to do with the illegal immigrant, but calls on the law enforcement agency to ‘maintain a record of each illegal immigrant released or discharged who is not transferred to the custody of the Untied States Immigration and Customs Enforcement.’

Illegal immigration has emerged as a top priority of the Republican super-majority in the Texas Legislature, and this is just one of several dozen bills introduced in Austin to deny jobs, housing, and government benefits to illegals.

Kolkhorst has already introduced a measure which would deny state benefits to illegal immigrants.

Several thousand people are expected to descend on the state capitol today to denounce the measures, and to call on the federal government, not the states, to handle matters related to immigration.

Appeared Here