Almost six in 10 illegal immigrants identified by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) as criminal threats are not deported, and often go on to commit crimes after release, according to the Center for Immigration Studies’ Jessica Vaughan.
Internal agency statistics show that in fiscal year 2015, ICE identified 152,393 illegal immigrants considered to be criminal threats—most held in local jails—but of those, ICE charged only 42 percent. Another 88,000, nearly 58 percent, were not processed for deportation.
Under Obama’s so-called Priority Enforcement Program, local authorities work with federal immigration officials to arrest and deport criminal aliens, but the program is less effective in real life than in Obama’s speeches, chiefly because local authorities are barred by law from doing what ICE claims it wants them to do. As Dane County, Wis., Sheriff David J. Mahoney explained, “ICE says, ‘Hold ’em, but we won’t defend you if you get sued.’”