Posts Tagged ‘U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’

Trump weighs mobilizing National Guard for immigration roundups (White House Denied This Report — DHS confirms it is 100% false)

February 17, 2017

Trump weighs mobilizing Nat Guard for immigration roundups

The Trump administration is considering a proposal to mobilize as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up unauthorized immigrants, including millions living nowhere near the Mexico border, according to a draft memo obtained by The Associated Press.

The 11-page document calls for the unprecedented militarization of immigration enforcement as far north as Portland, Oregon, and as far east as New Orleans, Louisiana.

Four states that border on Mexico are included in the proposal — California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas — but it also encompasses seven states contiguous to those four — Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the AP report was “100 percent not sure” and “irresponsible.” ”There is no effort at all to utilize the National Guard to round up unauthorized immigrants,” he said.

Governors in the 11 states would have a choice whether to have their guard troops participate, according to the memo, written by U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, a retired four-star Marine general.

While National Guard personnel have been used to assist with immigration-related missions on the U.S.-Mexico border before, they have never been used as broadly or as far north.

The memo is addressed to the then-acting heads of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. It would serve as guidance to implement the wide-ranging executive order on immigration and border security that President Donald Trump signed Jan. 25. Such memos are routinely issued to supplement executive orders.

Also dated Jan. 25, the draft memo says participating troops would be authorized “to perform the functions of an immigration officer in relation to the investigation, apprehension and detention of aliens in the United States.” It describes how the troops would be activated under a revived state-federal partnership program, and states that personnel would be authorized to conduct searches and identify and arrest any unauthorized immigrants.

Requests to the White House and the Department of Homeland Security for comment and a status report on the proposal were not answered.

The draft document has circulated among DHS staff over the last two weeks. As recently as Friday, staffers in several different offices reported discussions were underway.

If implemented, the impact could be significant. Nearly one-half of the 11.1 million people residing in the U.S. without authorization live in the 11 states, according to Pew Research Center estimates based on 2014 Census data.

Use of National Guard troops would greatly increase the number of immigrants targeted in one of Trump’s executive orders last month, which expanded the definition of who could be considered a criminal and therefore a potential target for deportation. That order also allows immigration agents to prioritize removing anyone who has “committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense.”

Under current rules, even if the proposal is implemented, there would not be immediate mass deportations. Those with existing deportation orders could be sent back to their countries of origin without additional court proceedings. But deportation orders generally would be needed for most other unauthorized immigrants.

The troops would not be nationalized, remaining under state control.

Spokespeople for the governors of Arizona, Utah, Nevada, California, Colorado, Oklahoma, Oregon and New Mexico said they were unaware of the proposal, and either declined to comment or said it was premature to discuss whether they would participate. The other three states did not immediately respond to the AP.

The proposal would extend the federal-local partnership program that President Barack Obama’s administration began scaling back in 2012 to address complaints that it promoted racial profiling.

The 287(g) program, which Trump included in his immigration executive order, gives local police, sheriff’s deputies and state troopers the authority to assist in the detection of immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally as a regular part of their law enforcement duties on the streets and in jails.

The draft memo also mentions other items included in Trump’s executive order, including the hiring of an additional 5,000 border agents, which needs financing from Congress, and his campaign promise to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.

The signed order contained no mention of the possible use of state National Guard troops.

According to the draft memo, the militarization effort would be proactive, specifically empowering Guard troops to solely carry out immigration enforcement, not as an add-on the way local law enforcement is used in the program.

Allowing Guard troops to operate inside non-border states also would go far beyond past deployments.

In addition to responding to natural or man-made disasters or for military protection of the population or critical infrastructure, state Guard forces have been used to assist with immigration-related tasks on the U.S.-Mexico border, including the construction of fences.

In the mid-2000s, President George W. Bush twice deployed Guard troops on the border to focus on non-law enforcement duties to help augment the Border Patrol as it bolstered its ranks. And in 2010, then-Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer announced a border security plan that included Guard reconnaissance, aerial patrolling and military exercises.

In July 2014, then-Texas Gov. Rick Perry ordered 1,000 National Guard troops to the border when the surge of migrant children fleeing violence in Central America overwhelmed U.S. officials responsible for their care. The Guard troops’ stated role on the border at the time was to provide extra sets of eyes but not make arrests.

Bush initiated the federal 287(g) program — named for a section of a 1996 immigration law — to allow specially trained local law enforcement officials to participate in immigration enforcement on the streets and check whether people held in local jails were in the country illegally. ICE trained and certified roughly 1,600 officers to carry out those checks from 2006 to 2015.

The memo describes the program as a “highly successful force multiplier” that identified more than 402,000 “removable aliens.”

But federal watchdogs were critical of how DHS ran the program, saying it was poorly supervised and provided insufficient training to officers, including on civil rights law. Obama phased out all the arrest power agreements in 2013 to instead focus on deporting recent border crossers and immigrants in the country illegally who posed a safety or national security threat.

Trump’s immigration strategy emerges as detentions at the nation’s southern border are down significantly from levels seen in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Last year, the arrest tally was the fifth-lowest since 1972. Deportations of people living in the U.S. illegally also increased under the Obama administration, though Republicans criticized Obama for setting prosecution guidelines that spared some groups from the threat of deportation, including those brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Last week, ICE officers arrested more than 680 people around the country in what Kelly said were routine, targeted operations; advocates called the actions stepped-up enforcement under Trump.

___

The AP National Investigative Team can be reached at investigate@ap.org

Follow Garance Burke on Twitter at @garanceburke

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– The Trump administration is considering a proposal to mobilize as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up unauthorized immigrants, including millions living nowhere near the Mexico border, according to a draft memo obtained by The Associated Press.

The 11-page document calls for the unprecedented militarization of immigration enforcement as far north as Portland, Oregon, and as far east as New Orleans, Louisiana.

Four states that border on Mexico are included in the proposal — California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas — but it also encompasses seven states contiguous to those four —  Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the AP report was “100 percent not sure” and “irresponsible.” “There is no effort at all to utilize the National Guard to round up unauthorized immigrants,” he said.

Governors in the 11 states would have a choice whether to have their guard troops participate, according to the memo, written by U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, a retired four-star Marine general.

While National Guard personnel have been used to assist with immigration-related missions on the U.S.-Mexico border before, they have never been used as broadly or as far north.

The memo is addressed to the then-acting heads of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. It would serve as guidance to implement the wide-ranging executive order on immigration and border security that President Donald Trump signed Jan. 25. Such memos are routinely issued to supplement executive orders.

Also dated Jan. 25, the draft memo says participating troops would be authorized “to perform the functions of an immigration officer in relation to the investigation, apprehension and detention of aliens in the United States.” It describes how the troops would be activated under a revived state-federal partnership program, and states that personnel would be authorized to conduct searches and identify and arrest any unauthorized immigrants.

Requests to the White House and the Department of Homeland Security for comment and a status report on the proposal were not answered.

The draft document has circulated among DHS staff over the last two weeks. As recently as Friday, staffers in several different offices reported discussions were underway.

If implemented, the impact could be significant. Nearly one-half of the 11.1 million people residing in the U.S. without authorization live in the 11 states, according to Pew Research Center estimates based on 2014 Census data.

Use of National Guard troops would greatly increase the number of immigrants targeted in one of Trump’s executive orders last month, which expanded the definition of who could be considered a criminal and therefore a potential target for deportation. That order also allows immigration agents to prioritize removing anyone who has “committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense.”

Under current rules, even if the proposal is implemented, there would not be immediate mass deportations. Those with existing deportation orders could be sent back to their countries of origin without additional court proceedings. But deportation orders generally would be needed for most other unauthorized immigrants.

The troops would not be nationalized, remaining under state control.

Spokespeople for the governors of Arizona, Utah, Nevada, California, Colorado, Oklahoma, Oregon and New Mexico said they were unaware of the proposal, and either declined to comment or said it was premature to discuss whether they would participate. The other three states did not immediately respond to the AP.

The proposal would extend the federal-local partnership program that President Barack Obama’s administration began scaling back in 2012 to address complaints that it promoted racial profiling.

The 287(g) program, which Trump included in his immigration executive order, gives local police, sheriff’s deputies and state troopers the authority to assist in the detection of immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally as a regular part of their law enforcement duties on the streets and in jails.

The draft memo also mentions other items included in Trump’s executive order, including the hiring of an additional 5,000 border agents, which needs financing from Congress, and his campaign promise to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.

The signed order contained no mention of the possible use of state National Guard troops.

According to the draft memo, the militarization effort would be proactive, specifically empowering Guard troops to solely carry out immigration enforcement, not as an add-on the way local law enforcement is used in the program.

Allowing Guard troops to operate inside non-border states also would go far beyond past deployments.

In addition to responding to natural or man-made disasters or for military protection of the population or critical infrastructure, state Guard forces have been used to assist with immigration-related tasks on the U.S.-Mexico border, including the construction of fences.

In the mid-2000s, President George W. Bush twice deployed Guard troops on the border to focus on non-law enforcement duties to help augment the Border Patrol as it bolstered its ranks. And in 2010, then-Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer announced a border security plan that included Guard reconnaissance, aerial patrolling and military exercises.

In July 2014, then-Texas Gov. Rick Perry ordered 1,000 National Guard troops to the border when the surge of migrant children fleeing violence in Central America overwhelmed U.S. officials responsible for their care. The Guard troops’ stated role on the border at the time was to provide extra sets of eyes but not make arrests.

Bush initiated the federal 287(g) program — named for a section of a 1996 immigration law — to allow specially trained local law enforcement officials to participate in immigration enforcement on the streets and check whether people held in local jails were in the country illegally. ICE trained and certified roughly 1,600 officers to carry out those checks from 2006 to 2015.

The memo describes the program as a “highly successful force multiplier” that identified more than 402,000 “removable aliens.”

But federal watchdogs were critical of how DHS ran the program, saying it was poorly supervised and provided insufficient training to officers, including on civil rights law. Obama phased out all the arrest power agreements in 2013 to instead focus on deporting recent border crossers and immigrants in the country illegally who posed a safety or national security threat.

Trump’s immigration strategy emerges as detentions at the nation’s southern border are down significantly from levels seen in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Last year, the arrest tally was the fifth-lowest since 1972. Deportations of people living in the U.S. illegally also increased under the Obama administration, though Republicans criticized Obama for setting prosecution guidelines that spared some groups from the threat of deportation, including those brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Last week, ICE officers arrested more than 680 people around the country in what Kelly said were routine, targeted operations; advocates called the actions stepped-up enforcement under Trump.

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Hundreds of immigrants arrested in ‘routine’ U.S. enforcement surge

February 11, 2017

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers detain a suspect as they conduct a targeted enforcement operation in Los Angeles, California, U.S. on February 7, 2017. Courtesy Charles Reed/U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement via REUTERS
By Sharon Bernstein and Kristina Cooke —  Reuters

U.S. federal immigration agents arrested hundreds of undocumented immigrants in at least four states this week in what officials on Friday called routine enforcement actions.

Reports of immigration sweeps this week sparked concern among immigration advocates and families, coming on the heels of President Donald Trump’s executive order barring refugees and immigrants from seven majority-Muslim nations. That order is currently on hold.

“The fear coursing through immigrant homes and the native-born Americans who love immigrants as friends and family is palpable,” Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum, said in a statement. “Reports of raids in immigrant communities are a grave concern.”

The enforcement actions took place in Atlanta, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and surrounding areas, said David Marin, director of enforcement and removal for the Los Angeles field office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Only five of 161 people arrested in Southern California would not have been enforcement priorities under the Obama administration, he said.

The agency did not release a total number of detainees. The Atlanta office, which covers three states, arrested 200 people, Bryan Cox, a spokesman for the office, said. The 161 arrests in the Los Angeles area were made in a region that included seven highly populated counties, Marin said.

Marin called the five-day operation an “enforcement surge.”

In a conference call with reporters, he said that such actions were routine, pointing to one last summer in Los Angeles under former President Barack Obama.

“The rash of these recent reports about ICE checkpoints and random sweeps, that’s all false and that’s dangerous and irresponsible,” Marin said. “Reports like that create a panic.”

He said that of the people arrested in Southern California, only 10 did not have criminal records. Of those, five had prior deportation orders.

Michael Kagan, a professor of immigration law at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, said immigration advocates are concerned that the arrests could signal the beginning of more aggressive enforcement and increased deportations under Trump.

“It sounds as if the majority are people who would have been priorities under Obama as well,” Kagan said in a telephone interview. “But the others may indicate the first edge of a new wave of arrests and deportations.”

Trump recently broadened the categories of people who could be targeted for immigration enforcement to anyone who had been charged with a crime, removing an Obama-era exception for people convicted of traffic misdemeanors, Kagan said.

(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein in Sacramento, Calif., and Kristina Cooke in San Francisco; Writing by Sharon Bernstein; Editing by Peter Henderson and Leslie Adler)

Related:

20,000 illegals with criminal convictions released into U.S. communities in 2015 — 86,000 in three years

April 29, 2016
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Homeland Security has made some gains in detaining criminal aliens but still released into the community
– The Washington Times – Wednesday, April 27, 2016
.

Homeland Security has made some gains in detaining criminal aliens but still released into the community nearly 20,000 immigrants last year who’d already been convicted of crimes — including hundreds charges with sexual assault, kidnapping or homicide — according to figures sent to Congress this week.

Between them the aliens notched a total of 64,000 crimes, including 12,307 drunken driving convictions, 1,728 cases of assault, 216 kidnappings and more than 200 homicide or manslaughter convictions, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform ahead of a hearing Thursday.

“These are not just numbers. These are individuals in this country illegally who were arrested, prosecuted and convicted. But instead of removing these criminals, ICE put them back on American streets,” said Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz.

Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah


SEE ALSO: Donald Trump planning to give immigration policy speech soon


One of those released by ICE in 2015, Haitian illegal immigrant Jean Jacques, would go on to kill a young woman in Connecticut just months later, stabbing Casey Chadwick to death. Her mother, Wendy Hartling, will testify to the Oversight Committee alongside relatives of other victims of illegal immigrants’ crimes.

Jacques had previously served time for attempted murder and was supposed to have been deported after that. But ICE officials said he wouldn’t produce documents proving his identity, and Haiti refused to accept him without those documents. ICE said it had to release him instead.

Those kinds of releases have been a black eye for the administration in recent years, with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and ICE Director Sarah R. Saldana saying they need to do a better job of keeping serious criminals in custody as they await deportation.

And they have made some strides, reducing the number of criminal aliens released from 36,007 in 2013 to 30,558 in 2014, and then cutting the number by more than 10,000 last year.

About half of those released in 2015 were ordered set free on bond by immigration judges — folks over whom ICE says it has no control. Another 2,000 were released to comply with a 2001 Supreme Court decision putting a six-month cap on how long immigrants can be held in detention absent extenuating circumstances.

Kathryn Steinle

“The release of aliens on bond is clearly provided for by statute, and it would not be permissible for DHS to categorically prohibit the release of certain aliens who are not subject to mandatory detention under [the Immigration and Nationality Act], and who do not pose a risk to public safety or a flight risk,” ICE told the Oversight Committee in a memo laying out the numbers.

In 89 other cases, the administration couldn’t arrange travel documents to ship someone back home in time — such as in the case of Jacques.

But in more than 7,000 cases, ICE said the releases were done at its own discretion. Those are the cases that most irk lawmakers, who wonder why anyone with a criminal conviction on his or her record is allowed to walk back into the community.

ICE insists it still takes steps to keep tabs on the criminals it releases, including using electronic monitoring or requiring them to regularly check in with immigration officers to make sure they’re keeping their noses clean.

Immigrant rights advocates say immigrants break the law at a lower rate than the native-born, and accuse Republicans of tarring the whole community for the actions of a few.

Those who favor a crackdown, however, say it’s impossible to excuse illegal immigrants who commit crimes, since, if the government did its job, they never would have been in the country to commit those crimes in the first place.

The issue exploded onto front pages last summer with the death of Kathryn Steinle, who was shot while walking the San Francisco waterfront with her father. The illegal immigrant charged with her killing had been repeatedly deported but had snuck back into the U.S. and was free under San Francisco’s sanctuary city policy.

Then, earlier this year, Sarah Root, a 21-year-old woman from Iowa, was killed in Omaha, Nebraska, and police blamed an illegal immigrant they said was drag racing while drunk. Police tried to get ICE to hold the man, Eswin Mejia, but agents refused to pick him up, and he has now skipped out on his bond and is a fugitive.

ICE has struggled to explain that incident, with the agency first saying it was following President Obama’s policies. More recently, Ms. Saldana said that wasn’t true and that agents in the field made a mistake.

Mr. Mejia entered the U.S. as part of the surge of illegal immigrant children who were caught at the border over the last few years and who, under Obama administration policies, were sent to live with relatives rather than quickly deported.

In Mr. Mejia’s case, he was placed with his brother, also an illegal immigrant, who was already here.

In a letter to administration officials this week, senators demanded to know what steps the government takes to make sure it’s placing children with proper custodians, and whether social workers follow up to make sure the children are getting the right care.

Scott Root, the young woman’s father, is scheduled to testify to the Oversight Committee on Thursday alongside Ms. Hartling and Ms. Saldana.

“The common thread among the stories we are going to hear today is that each of them was preventable,” Mr. Chaffetz said in the prepared statement he will deliver at the hearing. “If ICE had only followed the law, it is highly likely these witnesses would not be sitting here today grieving the loss of a loved one.”

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On Thursday’s “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren” on the Fox News Channel, House Oversight Committee Chairman

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) blasted the Department of Homeland Security for releasing illegal immigrants who have committed crimes, stating, “you name the violent crime, they have released them back out in the public,” that DHS wants to house fewer criminal illegal immigrants than they have the capacity for, tried to “reprogram” money that is allocated for deportations, and even wanted to give that money back rather than deport people.

Chaffetz said that the illegal immigrants released have committed “everything from homicide, to DUIs, to assault, to sexual battery, to — I mean, you name the violent crime, they have released them back out in the public, rather than either detaining them, or even better yet, deporting them.”

He added that DHS “tried to reprogram over $100 million that Congress had allocated for these deportations, they wanted to do give that money back, rather than do it. There is a minimum of 34,000 beds for these types of people. Yet, the department only wants to house about 30,000. And what they’ve done is they’ve released them out into the streets, and more than 200 of those people, that were in our detention, that had committed a crime, were released back out in the public, and committed homicide.”

Chaffetz further stated, “One of the excuses is, well those countries won’t take them back. Don’t give them any more foreign aid, and do what the law says, and that is, make sure the secretary of state does not give those countries any more visas, so more people can come to this country, get their attention.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

Chaffetz rips DHS release of criminal illegal immigrants

See video:

Philadelphia Police probe man’s claim of shooting cop in Islam’s name

January 9, 2016

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CBS News

PHILADELPHIA — Officer Jesse Hartnett was slowly patrolling his usual West Philadelphia beat just before midnight when a man appeared out of the darkness, firing a hail of bullets at close range as he charged toward the policeman’s car.

Hours later, police say, Edward Archer confessed to shooting the officer and told investigators he was following Allah, and had pledged his allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. Archer said he believed the police department defends laws that are contrary to Islam, police said.

Local and federal authorities spent much of Friday trying to verify the motive and executing search warrants at two Philadelphia area properties associated with Archer, hoping for more insight into how and why the shooting happened.

Archer’s mother told The Philadelphia Inquirer her 30-year-old son had been hearing voices recently and had felt targeted by police. She said the family had asked him to get help.

A gunman identified by police as Edward Archer, inset, fires at Officer Jesse Hartnett in his cruiser in Philadelphia Jan. 7, 2016.

A gunman identified by police as Edward Archer, inset, fires at Officer Jesse Hartnett in his cruiser in Philadelphia Jan. 7, 2016.  PHILADELPHIA POLICE DEPARTMENT

At a news conference, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross, who just took office Tuesday, didn’t label the shooting a terrorist attack, though he said Archer “clearly gave us a motive.”

“It wasn’t like laying it out completely, chapter and verse for us,” Ross told reporters at the department’s headquarters as Archer was being questioned upstairs. “We’re left to say, ‘OK, he’s leaving a trail for us. Where’s it going to lead us, if anywhere?'”

Ross told CBS News correspondent Jericka Duncan his biggest regret was that the firearm used was stolen from a fellow police officer’s home in 2013.

“It cuts deep,” Ross said. “I mean, things happen, but it cuts deep and deeper.”

Investigators believe Archer traveled to Saudi Arabia in 2011 and to Egypt in 2012, FBI special agent Eric Ruona said, and the purpose of that travel was being investigated by the FBI. Police said there was no indication anyone else was involved, and it is unclear if and where Archer practiced his faith locally.

Archer’s mother, Valerie Holliday, described her son as devout Muslim. Jacob Bender, the executive director of the Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, an advocacy group, said he contacted about five inner-city mosques and found no one who knew of Archer.

At about 11:40 p.m. Thursday, Archer fired at least 13 shots toward Hartnett and eventually got up next to the car and reached through the driver’s side window, investigators said. Despite being seriously wounded, Hartnett got out of his car, chased the suspect and returned fire, wounding his attacker in the buttocks, police said. Other officers chased Archer and apprehended him about a block away.

The 9 mm pistol used by Archer was recovered at the scene of the shooting, police said. Officials said they were trying to figure out how Archer got the weapon and whether it passed through other people’s hands since the October 2013 theft.

Last March, Archer pleaded guilty to firearms and assault charges stemming from a 2012 case but was immediately released and placed on probation, court records show. Records also show he was scheduled to be sentenced Monday in suburban Philadelphia in a traffic and forgery case.

Officer Jesse Hartnett chases after a suspect identified by police as Edward Archer after Hartnett was ambushed in Philadelphia Jan. 7, 2016, in a still taken from police camera footage.

Officer Jesse Hartnett chases after a suspect identified by police as Edward Archer after Hartnett was ambushed in Philadelphia Jan. 7, 2016, in a still taken from police camera footage.  PHILADELPHIA POLICE DEPARTMENT

The attorney who represented him in the firearms case was unavailable for comment Friday because he was in court, his office said. His lawyer in the forgery case did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

Surveillance footage of the attack showed Archer dressed in a white, long-sleeved tunic. When asked if the robe was considered Muslim garb, Ross said he didn’t know and didn’t think it mattered.

“We’ve already established why he believes he did it, and that’s probably enough,” Ross said.

Officer Jesse Hartnett
Officer Jesse Hartnett
PHILADELPHIA POLICE DEPARTMENT

Hartnett, 33, was shot three times in the arm and will require multiple surgeries, but was listed in stable condition at a hospital. Archer was treated and released into police custody.

Ross repeatedly called Hartnett’s survival “absolutely amazing.”

“It’s nothing short of miraculous and we’re thankful for that,” he said.

The officer’s father, Robert Hartnett, said his son was in good spirits.

“He’s a tough guy,” he said.

Hartnett served in the Coast Guard and has been on the Philadelphia force for four years. He always wanted to be a police officer, his father said.

When Hartnett called in to report shots fired, he shouted into his police radio: “I’m bleeding heavily!”

Jim Kenney, in his first week as mayor of the nation’s fifth-largest city, called Archer’s actions “abhorrent” and “terrible” and said they have nothing to do with the teachings of Islam.

“This is a criminal with a stolen gun who tried to kill one of our officers,” he said. “It has nothing to do with being a Muslim or following the Islamic faith.”

Related:

Suspect says he shot Philly cop ‘in the name of Islam’ — Mayor Jim Kenney played down the Islam connection — “It has nothing to do with being a Muslim or following the Islamic faith.”

January 8, 2016

 

Philadelphis Mayor Jim Kenney just made the city a “sanctuary city”

, USATODAY
January 8, 2016

The suspect in the wounding of a Philadelphia police officer in an execution-style ambush told officers that he carried out the attack “in the name of Islam,” Police Commissioner Richard Ross said Friday.

Ross said the suspect, Edward Archer, 30, fired 13 shots from a semiautomatic pistol that hit Officer Jessie Hartnett and his car Thursday night. The 33-year-old officer returned fire, hitting the gunman at least three times.

Ross said Archer, who was wearing a long white robe over dark pants during the attack, “confessed to committing this cowardly act in the name of Islam. He said he believes that the police defend laws that are contrary to the teaching of the Koran.”

The commissioner said Hartnett, who was hit three times in his left arm, sustained “very serious injuries.”

A police captain involved in the interrogation of Archer told reporters that the suspect told them he pledges allegiance to the Islamic State terror group, follows Allah and that he was called upon by his faith to commit the shooting.

Surveillance video, apparently taken from a building or post behind the incident, shows the gunman running into the street and right up the police car. He puts the gun directly into the driver-side window and fires at point-blank range.

Officer Jesse Hartnett. (Philadelphia Police Dept)

Mayor Jim Kenney, who also spoke to reporters Friday afternoon, played down the Islam connection. “This is a criminal with a stolen gun who tried to kill one of our officers, ” he said. “It has nothing to do with being a Muslim or following the Islamic faith.”

Ross said the weapon was a stolen police gun.

“Shots fired! I’m shot! I’m bleeding heavily!” Hartnett can be heard shouting on the police radio, KYW-TV reported.

The suspect was quickly taken into custody by other officers after running from the scene.

The gunman, wearing multiple layers of clothing, flagged down Hartnett’s police car on 60th street and opened fire..

“This is absolutely one of the scariest things I’ve ever seen,” Ross told reporters. “This guy tried to execute the police officer. The police officer had no idea he was coming.”

Philly.com quoted Archer’s mother, Valerie Holliday, as saying her son suffered head injuries from playing football and a moped accident. She said he has “been acting kind of strangely lately, talking to himself … laughing and mumbling.”

Kenney, who is in his first week as mayor of Philadelphia, said: “There are just too many guns on the streets and I think our national government needs to do something about that.”

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Jim Kenney Rescinds Policy, Philly a ‘Sanctuary City’ Again

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Image: Jim Kenney Rescinds Policy, Philly a ‘Sanctuary City’ Again
New Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney on election night. (REUTERS/Mark Makela)

By Nick Sanchez | Wednesday, 06 Jan 2016 08:10 AM

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney on his first day in office rescinded a policy set up by his predecessor in order to restore the city’s status as a so-called “sanctuary city” for illegal immigrants.

“Executive Order 5-16 states that city authorities will not cooperate with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainer requests for undocumented citizens who are arrested and would have otherwise been released from custody, unless the individual has committed a first or second degree felony involving violence,” the mayor’s office said in a statement, Metro US reported.

Previous Mayor Michael Nutter ended city cooperation with ICE in 2014, but last month reversed course and issued an order increasing such coordination.

Kenney’s executive order to rescind cooperation with federal agents made good on a promise he made during the Nutter administration’s last days.

In addition to signing the executive order, Kenney said he had recently spoken with the  Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, who is promoting a new “Priority Enforcement” program over an old “Secure Communities” plan.

According to Philly.com, Kenney said ICE representatives will soon visit the city and brief his administration on the new program.
Latest News Update

 

“But until that happens,” he said, “we are going back to our old situation.”

That means that—like it was between April 2014 and last month—police are barred from telling ICE agents about undocumented prisoners’ pending releases unless that person was convicted of a felony and ICE had made a request accompanied by a warrant.

Sanctuary cities came to nation attention after 32-year-old San Francisco woman Kathryn “Kate” Steinle was allegedly shot and killed this past summer by Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, an undocumented immigrant from Mexico. Lopez-Sanchez, a convicted felon, has been deported many times, but had returned illegally to reside in San Francisco, a longstanding sanctuary city.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said Steinle’s death was tragic, and that American cities needed to end their sanctuary policies because they grant safe haven to criminals.

In addition to the sanctuary city orders, “Kenney also signed executive orders establishing the position and office of Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, re-establishing the office of Chief Integrity Officer and creating the Offices of Planning and Development and Chief Administrative Officer,” Philly Voice reported.
Read Latest Breaking News from Newsmax.com http://www.newsmax.com/TheWire/jim-kenney-philadelphia-mayor-sanctuary-city/2016/01/06/id/708325/#ixzz3wgPM7KPZ
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http://www.newsmax.com/TheWire/jim-kenney-philadelphia-mayor-sanctuary-city/2016/01/06/id/708325/

Read more:

http://6abc.com/news/police-suspect-confessed-to-cop-shooting-in-name-of-islam/1150918/

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(CNN) A 30-year-old man has confessed to shooting a Philadelphia police officer in the name of the “Islamic State,” presumably referring to the terrorist group ISIS, officials said Friday.

Officer Jesse Hartnett, 33, was hit three times on Thursday night and suffered “some very serious injuries that will require multiple surgeries,” police Commissioner Richard Ross told reporters.

Despite being seriously injured, the four-year police veteran got out of his patrol car and shot the assailant, who later was apprehended by other officers, Ross said.

The alleged assailant appeared to be targeting a police officer, Ross said. “He was trying to assassinate this police officer.”

James Clarke, police homicide captain, told CNN the suspect said to investigators: “I follow Allah. I pledge my allegiance to the Islamic State and that’s why I did what I did.”

The alleged gunman was identified by police as Edward Archer, of Yeadon, a Philadelphia suburb.

Hartnett shouted desperately into his police radio after someone, authorities say, approached his patrol car and shot him as he sat there Thursday night.

“Shots fired! … I’m bleeding heavily!” Hartnett shouts in a recording of his radio call for backup. “I’m bleeding. Get us another unit out here!”

Hartnett managed to fire back and wound the gunman after what authorities say was an apparent attempt to execute the officer at a city intersection.

The gunman fired 13 shots from a semiautomatic pistol into Hartnett’s car as the officer sat in the driver’s seat, a law enforcement source told CNN. The shooting happened about 11:30 p.m. in west Philadelphia, CNN affiliate KYW reported.

Hartnett was shot three times in an arm and returned fire, the source said.

A 9mm Glock 17 was recovered from Archer, police said. The gun was reported stolen from the home of a police officer in 2013.

Hartnett was taken to a hospital, where he underwent surgery for a broken arm, KYW reported.

A picture — one that the Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper says is a still frame from surveillance video of the shooting — shows a person standing right next to the car with his arm through the lowered driver’s-side window, close enough to be shooting someone at point-blank range.

A gun sits by a marker after Thursday night's shooting in west Philadelphia.

The Inquirer did not report where it got the picture. But Ross told reporters that he had seen video of the incident and that it was “absolutely one of the scariest things I’ve ever seen.”

CNN hasn’t independently confirmed the authenticity of the image. Information on the origin of the video that Ross referenced and what Hartnett had been doing in the moments leading to the shooting wasn’t immediately available.

“This guy tried to execute the police officer. The police officer had no idea he was coming,” Ross said. “It’s amazing he’s alive.”

Ross said it appears Hartnett suffered significant nerve damage.

“Fortunately, he’s awake. He was coherent. He’s OK,” Ross said.

The shooting caught the attention of Gov. Tom Wolf, who said he is “thankful that Officer Hartnett is alive and not facing life-threatening injuries after being ambushed.”

“We wish him and his family the best during his recovery. This alleged intentional act of violence against an officer seeking to help a fellow citizen is horrifying and has no place in Pennsylvania,” he said.

Obama administration had “secret policy” to not include social media reviews in vetting for entry to the U.S. because of a fear of “bad public relations” — Fourteen Americans died in San Bernardino, in part, because of that policy

December 14, 2015

By Brian Ross, Rhonda Schwartz, James Gordon Meek and Josh Margolin

ABC News

People Smugglers: From Texas To Greece — Illegal Profits Lure Criminals

September 26, 2015

.

The Associated Press

Texas Deadly Chase_Cham360.jpg

Sept. 24, 2015: In this photo provided by the Edna (Texas) Police Department, an SUV that flipped several times remains on the scene following a fatal crash and police chase. Officers tried to stop the SUV for a traffic violation but the vehicle sped away and police gave chase. (Edna Police Department via AP)

Six people who were killed when the SUV they were in crashed following a police chase were being transported by a smuggling organization, federal officials said Thursday.

The driver, a U.S. citizen, and two others in the vehicle are believed to be members of the smuggling organization, Leticia Zamarripa, a spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said in a statement.

The driver was one of the individuals who died in the accident, while the other five killed were immigrants in the U.S. illegally.

Officials say the vehicle was packed with the three smuggling ring members and 13 people who were in the country illegally.

Those being smuggled in the vehicle were adults from Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico, Zamarripa said. One of the smuggling suspects is from Mexico, and the nationality of the other is unknown, she said.

The chase began early Thursday as officers in Edna, 90 miles southwest of Houston, tried to stop the 2003 Ford Explorer for a traffic violation, said city police Chief Clinton Wooldridge.

As the vehicle veered onto Highway 59, the driver seemed to overcorrect and the SUV flipped several times, police said.

Four people died at the scene and two more died at hospitals, Wooldridge said.

“It is a tragedy and it is a horrible situation,” Wooldridge said at a news conference Thursday afternoon.

Two of the immigrants were being treated at a hospital in nearby Victoria for fractures, while another was in critical condition at a Houston hospital, Wooldridge said. The other immigrants who were injured in the crash were treated at Jackson County Hospital in Edna and later released into the custody of U.S. Border Patrol agents.

Two people who ran from the scene were tracked down and detained. A third person was found around 3 p.m. Thursday across the roadway from the crash site, near a home, Wooldridge said.

“We’ve been in contact with consulates and they are working with the medical examiner’s offices to try and find these people’s families,” he said.

The car had been modified so it would hold 16 people, with the center seat having been removed, Wooldridge said.

“I believe the Ford Explorer is built on a half-ton chassis and it had ¾ of a ton of people. So that probably had something to do with the instability of the vehicle,” he said.

It is not uncommon for vehicles packed with immigrants who have entered the U.S. illegally to be involved in deadly crashes as they are shuttled away from the border.

Last year, a South Texas teenager was sentenced to 20 years in prison after being convicted in a 2012 accident that killed nine immigrants. The teenager had been fleeing Border Patrol agents when the van he was driving with at least 17 immigrants inside flipped. Also, a Mexican man was sentenced to 45 years in prison over a crash that left seven immigrants dead in 2013.

Wooldridge said his agency and others in the area have a lot of experience stopping northbound vehicles that are transporting drugs and immigrants in the country illegally.

“That’s fairly common in our area,” he said.

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People Smugglers Sending Migrants from Libya To Europe Killed

The alleged ringleader behind the smuggling of thousands of people from Libya to Europe has been killed in a shootout, with senior Tripoli officials accusing Italy of being behind the killing.

Salah al-Maskhout was killed on Friday alongside eight other men in Zuwara, a coastal city in north-west Libya which has become a hub for refugees and migrants trying to reach Europe.

Read the rest:

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/26/libya-alleged-key-people-smuggler-killed-in-shootout

U.S. Deports Second Chinese Fugitive

September 24, 2015

U.S. Deports Second Chinese Fugitive – China Real Time Report – WSJ

Kuang Wan Fang, center, after arriving at Fuzhou’s Changle Airport in Fujian province on Thursday.

Zuma Press

For the second time in the past week, Chinese authorities said a citizen suspected of corruption was forcibly deported by the U.S., the latest sign of law-enforcement cooperation between the governments despite the absence of a formal extradition treaty. As WSJ’s James Areddy reports:

Kuang Wan Fang, who seven years ago along with others was convicted in a U.S. court of involvement in a scheme to bilk state-owned Bank of China Ltd. of $485 million and launder the money through casinos and the U.S. financial system, was returned to China on Thursday aboard a chartered jet, said a statement from the country’s top anticorruption agency, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

A spokesman for the U.S. Embassy in Beijing on Thursday confirmed Ms. Kuang “was removed from the United States via immigration proceedings” and returned to China. He referred further questions to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, whose spokesman wasn’t immediately available to comment.

Ms. Kuang, who is also known as Wendy and had once been naturalized as a U.S. citizen, couldn’t be reached for comment and it was unclear whether she has a lawyer. The anticorruption bureau’s statement said authorities in the southern province of Guangdong, where the bank theft took place, would investigate her for suspected criminal acts of corruption and bribery. Photos and video on state television showed her in police custody but without handcuffs and wearing street clothes.

Read the full story on WSJ.com.

http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2015/09/24/u-s-deports-second-chinese-fugitive/

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Homeland Security wants national database using license-plate scanners

February 18, 2014

By Josh Hicks
The Washington Post

The Department of Homeland Security plans to build a national database that would gather information from license-plate readers that scan every vehicle crossing their paths, according to a solicitation last week from the agency.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement would use the technology to help locate and arrest “absconders and criminal aliens,” reducing surveillance hours and enhancing officer safety, according to the request.

DHS spokeswoman Gillian Christensen told Ars Technica that the database “could only be accessed in conjunction with ongoing criminal investigations.”

License-plate readers, which automatically record information on all vehicles that cross their paths instead of just suspect vehicles, are controversial among privacy advocates. The American Civil Liberties Union issued a report last year criticizing the increased use of such devices, saying they collect vast amounts of data on innocent individuals and could be used for abusive tracking and targeting.

“More and more cameras, longer retention periods, and widespread sharing allow law enforcement agents to assemble the individual puzzle pieces of where we have been over time into a single, high-resolution image of our lives,” the ACLU said.

The group has argued that constant monitoring can “chill the exercise of our cherished rights to free speech and association.”

Despite concerns about automatic license-plate readers, the use of such devices has grown in recent years, in large part due to millions of dollars in grants from Homeland Security and the Justice Department to state and local law-enforcement agencies.

A 2011 survey of 70 police agencies by the Police Executive Research Forum found that nearly three-quarters of the departments were using license-plate readers and 85 percent planned to increase their use of the devices.

The Homeland Security plan comes amid increased concerns about the government’s sweeping domestic surveillance programs, which came under heightened scrutiny following leaks last year from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

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