Judicial Watch obtained documents proving that, to date, the Obama administration has released 165,950 illegal aliens with criminal convictions back into the population. The watchdog organization released 76 pages of Homeland Security documents on Friday, retrieved through FOIA request, showing that many of the criminals were found guilty of violent crimes, including homicide, sexual assault, kidnapping, and aggravated assault.
According to a report published by the Center for Immigration Services in May 2014, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) freed 36,007 convicted criminal aliens who had nearly 88,000 convictions, including 193 homicide convictions, 426 sexual assault convictions, and 303 kidnapping convictions in the year 2013 alone.
Immediately following the release of the CIS report, former Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, issued a statement terming the action “the worst prison break in American history.” He added that “President Obama’s lax immigration policies have put the lives of Americans at risk.”
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The documents obtained by Judicial Watch include an email from House Homeland Security Subcommittee Counsel Valerie Baldwin to the Executive Associate Director of ICE Thomas Homan last May expressing the subcommittee’s frustration over ICE’s stonewalling of information concerning the criminal alien release policies:
At the ICE hearing and throughout the data call on ICE’s budget request, we’ve requested data on the make-up of the non-detained ATD [Alternatives to Detention] docket, specifically as it relates to violent crimes. I’m wondering why the Washington Times and Washington Post have more information on the ATD population than the Chairman and the other members of the subcommittee. Please respond with an answer today.
Western Journalism reported on a high profile ICE nationwide sweep for criminal illegal aliens (called “Operation Cross Check”) which occurred in the first week of March, 2015. ICE touted that it had rounded up over 2,000 criminal illegal aliens who “will be processed administratively for removal from the United States.” According to an ICE press release, the agency had gone after:
Priority 1 targets [which] include threats to national security, criminal street gang members, convicted felons, and aggravated felons. Priority 2 targets [which] have convictions for three or more misdemeanors or convictions for significant misdemeanors, including DUIs.
The documents obtained by Judicial Watch call into question the seriousness of ICE’s efforts in executing its own stated priorities. Judicial Watch’s president, Tom Fitton, said:
It’s appalling that we’ve had to sue in federal court to get key information about the Obama administration’s release of 165,950 convicted criminal aliens. These documents show the Obama administration is lying when it says that its ‘enforcement priorities’ include deporting illegal aliens who have committed heinous crimes…Where do the innocent victims of the illegal alien criminals this president’s appointees have set free go for justice?