As President Biden’s border crisis continues to worsen, a group of Texas sheriffs and an association of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers sued the Biden administration for restricting the authority of ICE from taking most arrested illegal immigrants into custody for deportation, claiming the policy is allowing “extremely dangerous illegal aliens” to be released into the public.
“As part of President Joe Biden’s pledge to take a more humane approach to immigration enforcement compared to the harsh policies of former President Donald Trump, the Biden administration issued a memo Feb. 18 directing ICE to focus on deporting immigrants who are national security or terrorist threats, gang members, those who have been convicted of certain aggravated felonies and any that entered the country after Nov. 1,” Courthouse News reports. “ICE officers who want to take into custody jailed immigrants falling outside those categories must first obtain approval from their bosses.”
According to the lawsuit, the Biden administration’s Feb. 18 Memorandum has blocked ICE officers from taking illegal immigrants into custody who have committed crimes like human trafficking.
“Since the issuance of the February 18 Memorandum, ICE officers have been unable to take custody of, or issue detainer requests for, dangerous criminal aliens whose detention is mandated by the [Immigration and Nationality Act]. Specifically, detention is required for aliens who have committed or been convicted of numerous crimes other than aggravated felonies, such as: crimes of moral turpitude, crimes involving controlled substances, human trafficking, money laundering, and certain firearm offenses,” the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit added, “Prior to the February 18 Memorandum, ICE officers routinely took custody of criminal aliens who, after serving time for the commission of state crimes, were about to be released. ICE officers were contacted by local law enforcement so that ICE could take custody of the aliens upon their release and remove them from the country. Since the issuance of the February 18 Memorandum, in many cases ICE officers have not been permitted to take custody of such criminal aliens. As a result, numerous criminal aliens have been released onto the streets.”
The Biden administration’s policies restricting the authority of ICE resulted in record low levels of deportation amid record levels of illegal immigration. The following three months after the Biden administration’s February Memorandum, illegal immigration levels repeatedly broke 20-year records.
The Washington Post reported in May, “Under new Biden administration rules curtailing immigration enforcement, ICE carried out fewer than 3,000 deportations last month, the lowest level on record. The agency’s 6,000 officers currently average one arrest every two months.”
“ICE under President Biden is an agency on probation,” the Washington Post continued. “The new administration has rejected calls from some Democrats to eliminate the agency entirely, but Biden has placed ICE deportation officers on a leash so tight that some say their work is being functionally abolished.”