U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) deportation officers apprehended 650 individuals during a four-day operation last week, Operation Border Guardian/Border Resolve, which targeted individuals who entered the country as unaccompanied alien children (UACs) and family units.
This operation was the second iteration of Operation Border Guardian/Border Resolve which first took place in January and February 2016 in response to the significant spike in families and UACs from Central America attempting to illegally cross the southern border.
All of the individuals targeted during this operation had been issued a final order of removal by a federal immigration judge, and had no appeals or motions to re-open their case pending before the nation’s immigration courts.
(U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) enforces federal laws governing border control, customs, trade and immigration to promote homeland security and public safety. Courtesy of ICE and YouTube)
Of the 650 arrested nationwide July 23 to 26, 73 were members of family units and 120 entered the country illegally as UACs.
An additional 457 others encountered during this operation were also arrested.
One-hundred and thirty of the 650 had criminal convictions in addition to being in the country illegally, for crimes including but not limited to DUI, assault and battery, drug possession, domestic abuse and sexual assault.
The UACs targeted for arrest during this operation had either reached the age of 18 or were at least 16 and had criminal histories and/or suspected gang ties.
(Acting ICE director speaks out about the truck tragedy in Texas, when police found 9 dead in a truck at a Walmart. Courtesy of Fox News and YouTube.)
“Illegally entering the United States as a family unit or UAC does not protect individuals from being subject to the immigration laws of this country,” said ICE Acting Director Thomas Homan.
“I urge anyone considering making the dangerous and unlawful journey to the United States: Please do not take this risk.”
“Ultimately, if you have no basis to remain in the United States, you will be identified, apprehended and returned to your home country.”
Attempting the journey to unlawfully enter the United States – alone or by paying ruthless human smuggling organizations – is dangerous, and especially so for women and children, according to ICE officials.
(Learn about Border Patrol’s Border Safety Initiative events, highlighting the dangers of walking through the desert heat through difficult terrain. Courtesy of CBP, Bridget Bosch and YouTube)
ICE continues to work with its partners in Mexico and Central America to build their capacity to address migration flows and combat the ruthless criminal organizations that engage in human smuggling.
ICE deportation officers carry out targeted enforcement operations every day in locations around the country as part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to protect the nation, uphold public safety, and protect the integrity of our immigration laws and border controls.
These operations involve existing, established Fugitive Operations Teams, Mobile Criminal Alien Teams and in cases of especially high-risk enforcement actions, Special Response Teams (SRT).
During such enforcement operations ICE officers frequently encounter additional suspects who may be in the United States in violation of federal immigration laws.
Those persons will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and, when appropriate, arrested by ICE.