U.S. immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, has just completed its “Operation Return to Sender” initiative and has announced that it apprehended more than 2,000 criminal aliens, illegal alien gang members, fugitive aliens and other violators of immigration status. The initiative, which ran from May 26 to June 13, include virtually every ICE field office in the nation, working in collaboration with state and local law enforcement agencies.
According to ICE, about half of the apprehended individuals had criminal records for crimes such as sexual assault of a minor, assault with a deadly weapon and abduction. In a press release published today, ICE representatives note the following statistics:
“Approximately 146 of those arrested had convictions for sexual offenses involving minors. In addition, roughly 367 of the arrested aliens were members or associates of violent street gangs, including Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13). Finally, roughly 640 of those arrested were fugitive aliens who had been issued final orders of removal by an Immigration judge but failed to comply.”
According to ICE: “America’s welcome does not extend to immigrants who come here to commit crimes. ICE will leave no stone unturned in hunting down and deporting aliens who victimize our communities. Interior enforcement initiatives like Operation Return to Sender are a critical and necessary complement to our nation’s border security measures.”
It is, however, important to note that the other half of the apprehended individuals were picked up by ICE for administrative immigration violations. These people have been either placed in deportation proceedings or have already been repatriated to their home countries.