From July 16 to 20, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested 274 immigrants in the area of Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas. Those arrested included 233 men, 28 women and 13 children, said ICE spokesperson Carl Rusnok. Of the 274, 99 had criminal convictions. Most of the arrests happened at homes. ICE did not say how many of those arrested were being sought, but did confirm that “some” of those taken into custody were simply discovered in the raided homes and were unable to prove they were here legally. “Many of these individuals are in the wrong place at the wrong time, many live together,” said Nuria T. Prendes, field office director for ICE’s Office of Detention and Removal Operations. Police in Dallas, Irving, Fort Worth, Arlington, Farmers Branch, Carrollton and Blue Mound, along with the Dallas County constable, helped agents in the operation, according to an ICE statement.
Those arrested were from Colombia, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nigeria, Romania and South Korea. By the end of the five-day operation, 137 of the Mexicans arrested had already been returned to Mexico; the other people who were arrested were awaiting deportation proceedings, ICE said. The minors taken into custody could have left voluntarily, if they were from Mexico, or released to a guardian, ICE officials said. Unaccompanied minors would be turned over to the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement. (AP, July 20; ICE news release, July 20; Dallas Morning News, July 21)
This past April, ICE arrested 148 immigrants in the Dallas area, including seven children. Only 41 of the 148 had been accused of crimes. (DMN, July 21)
In a seven-day operation that ended on the morning of July 23, ICE agents working in partnership with other federal and local law enforcement agencies arrested 121 people described as members of violent street gangs in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. Some of those arrested were named on warrants. Some are being presented to the US Attorney’s Office for federal prosecution on felony charges of re-entering the US after having already been deported. The arrests were part of “Operation Community Shield,” a national ICE program targeting gang members. In a news release, ICE claimed it has arrested more than 4,500 gang members nationwide; those arrested are then either prosecuted criminally or removed from the US through immigration proceedings, says ICE.
Law enforcement agencies that participated in the Dallas area operation include: the US Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Texas; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF); the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS); the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA); the FBI; the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BoP); Fort Worth Police Department; Dallas Police Department; Irving Police Department; Farmers Branch Police Department; Arlington Police Department; and Wichita Falls Police Department. (ICE news release, July 23)
From Immigration News Briefs, July 29
See our last post on the immigration crackdown.