ICE Officials Say Round Up of Gang Members Has Been a Success

Federal agents arrested almost 1,400 people across the country in what immigration officials are calling the "largest gang surge" in its investigative arm's history, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Acting Director Thomas Homan announced today.

According to ICE, 1,095 of those arrested were confirmed gang members from gangs like the Bloods, Crips, MS-13 and the Surenos.

The agency also said three people arrested were in the past protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an Obama-era program created to allow those brought into the United States as children to remain in the country. Those granted DACA and found to pose a threat to national security or public safety may have their deferred action terminated at any time, and the Department of Homeland Security may seek to deport them.

The agency said Thursday in a written statement that the operation, which ran from March 26 to May 6, targeted gang members and associates involved in crimes including drug trafficking, sex trafficking, weapons smuggling, human smuggling, murder and racketeering. It concluded with a total of 1,378 arrests made, 20,000 ounces of narcotics and over 200 guns seized.

Fewer than a third of those arrested in the latest operation were foreign citizens. Outside of this operation, many others have had their DACA revoked by USCIS for gang membership, but remain in the country.

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Forty-eight of the arrests were USA citizens, seven were foreigners, 16 people were confirmed gang members, and seven were gang associates, according to ICE.

According to ICE, 280 arrests were soley immigration-related.

Acting director Homan calls the ongoing operation one of ICE's highest priorities. They said identifying and capturing these criminals takes major help from local law enforcement as well.

ICE said that 10 people arrested during the newest operation crossed the border as unaccompanied minors, but did not elaborate on when.

(Homan) "A total of 1,378 individuals were arrested". Of those, eight were members of MS-13, the notoriously violent gang whose members include a large number of Central American illegal aliens.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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