Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials ordered a Maricopa County, Arizona sheriff to release dozens of illegal immigrants arrested during a recent sweep.
The three-day sweep caught up 74 suspected illegal aliens. However, when the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office called ICE regarding the recently arrested illegal aliens, the agency ordered deputies to release all who did not have a criminal conviction in the U.S.
According to a report from Judicial Watch, this constituted a violation of the partnership agreement, known as 287(g), that the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department has had with ICE for two years.
The mystery order resulted in at least 25 of those caught in the sweep being detained for a few days – only to be released without being deported by ICE.
Under the partnership program, ICE gets notified by the local authority to take custody and begin deportation proceedings. The highly successful program has come under fire by immigration advocates who succeeded in getting the feds to launch a racial profiling investigation of Maricopa Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
According to the Judicial Watch report, the mass-release is not the first case of friction between the feds and local law enforcement. Last year, ICE reportedly had feuds with local police departments around the country involving previously arrested illegal immigrants who committed atrocious crimes after being released rather than deported.
Local law enforcement officials claimed that they notified ICE to put a hold on the suspect, all of which had criminal histories, yet the federal agency said it was never contacted.
Reportedly, the failure to communicate resulted in six murders and a rape in different parts of the country Rhode Island, California and Colorado.
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