ICE Busts of Illegals In The USA

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Apr 16, 2010
 

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ICE Busts Massive Human Smuggling Ring That Stretches Length of U.S.

FOXNews.com
April 15,2010

More than 800 law enforcement agents swooped down on a massive human smuggling ring in Arizona early Thursday morning, delivering a "stunning blow" to a criminal network that helped shuttled illegal immigrants all around the country.

More than 800 law enforcement agents swooped down on a massive human smuggling ring in Arizona early Thursday morning, delivering a "stunning blow" to a criminal network that helped shuttled illegal immigrants all around the country.

Thursday's strike is the largest coordinated action ever led by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which partnered with eight other federal, state and local agencies to arrest 47 suspects in Phoenix, Tucson, Nogales and Rio Rico, Arizona.

"Alien smugglers are a scourge," ICE Assistant Secretary John Morton said. "They violate our borders ...[and] profit at our expense by knowingly breaking our laws, day in and day out. Today we turned the tables on the smugglers."

ICE agents targeted shuttle van services they believe have ferried thousands of illegal immigrants from southern Arizona to Phoenix, providing passengers fake $30 ride receipts and even coaching them on how to answer law enforcement agents if the buses were stopped at immigration checkpoints along the highway. From there the illegal immigrants were left at drop-houses or brought to shuttle services that offer rides to destinations all over the West Coast.

ICE alleges that the businesses are part of a larger smuggling operation that carries illegal immigrants over the border from Mexico "to the far corners of the United States" — places as far-flung as New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.
(continued)

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/04/15/ice-bust...

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Apr 16, 2010
 

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Smuggling boat found off San Diego, 8 arrested.

Immigration

ENCINITAS, Calif.(AP)— For the fifth time in a week, federal authorities have thwarted a boat full of Mexican nationals as they were attempting to enter the United States off the San Diego County coast.

Early Thursday morning, U.S. Border Patrol agents spotted a panga boat along the San Diego coastline, where eight suspected illegal immigrants disembarked the vessel. They were arrested after admitting they were Mexican nationals in the country illegally.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement is investigating the case further.

Border agents apprehended 23 suspected illegal immigrants Wednesday. Over the weekend five Mexican nationals and a U.S. citizen were apprehended near Mission Bay, as well as a 24-foot boat carrying eight Mexican nationals. Another 11 Mexican nationals were apprehended last Friday.

http://www.svherald.com/content/immigration/2...

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Apr 16, 2010
 

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ICE-led operation targets shuttle firms in effort to halt illegal-immigrant traffic

68 arrested in smuggling raid

Brady McCombs
Arizona Daily Star
April 16, 2010

Immigration agents raided four shuttle companies on Tucson's south side Thursday morning as part of a major binational operation targeting an illegal-immigrant smuggling network.

Officials mobilized more than 800 federal, state and local law enforcement officers to arrest 68 total people in Tucson, Phoenix, Rio Rico, Nogales, Ariz., and Nogales, Sonora, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said.

The arrests marked the culmination of a yearlong investigation named "Operation in Plain Sight" that ICE officials called the largest illegal-immigrant smuggling investigation in the agency's seven-year history.

Fifty-one of the people arrested were owners and employees of four Tucson shuttle companies, and a fifth from Phoenix, that ran a smuggling ring that transported thousands of illegal immigrants from the border to Tucson and Phoenix, officials said. Mexican officials arrested Claudio Ramirez-Morales who was described as the Mexican-based manager of a smuggling organization.

The other 17 arrested were illegal immigrants agents encountered as they served search warrants in Phoenix and Tucson.

Thursday's busts were a major shift in how ICE and other federal agencies deal with illegal immigration, said John Morton, assistant secretary of Homeland Security for Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

"We are not seeking to prosecute a given smuggler, a given shuttle company, a given driver,'' he said. "We are seeking to take down an entire human-smuggling industry."

But while ICE championed the busts, many of Tucson's south-side residents and immigrant advocates questioned the show of force and hordes of media invited to watch.

"This is an intimidating tactic," said Carmen Sanchez, who lives nearby and came to watch. "This is putting fear into the Hispanic community."
(continued)

http://azstarnet.com/news/local/border/articl...

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Apr 16, 2010
 

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5 Ariz. shuttle services raided in smuggling bust

By BOB CHRISTIE and JACQUES BILLEAUD
April 16, 2010

Federal agents, some in black hoods, swarmed over five Arizona shuttle businesses in a major crackdown on human trafficking, arresting dozens of van operators and smugglers accused of transporting illegal immigrants from the Mexican border to Phoenix.

Authorities said Thursday's raids were the largest human smuggling bust in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's seven-year history, and represented a blow to a vital link in an elaborate immigrant trafficking chain.

"It will be extremely difficult to repair that chain. It is the missing link that greatly disrupts the infrastructure of human smuggling organizations," said Dennis Burke, U.S. attorney for Arizona.

Investigators said the four shuttle services in Tucson and one in Phoenix were created solely to help smugglers transport thousands of illegal immigrants under a veil of legitimacy.

The businesses are suspected of giving the migrants fraudulent receipts to make the trips look legitimate and coaching them on what to say if their vans were pulled over by police.

"They didn't advertise at all, because they didn't need to, they had a built-in clientele," said Matthew Allen, the chief of investigations for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Arizona.

Arrests were made in Phoenix, Tucson and two other Arizona towns along the border, Nogales and Rio Rico. Investigators also made arrests in Tennessee, and Mexican authorities detained people in the border state of Sonora. In all, 47 people were in custody, including the leaders of three smuggling operations.

More than 800 agents from nine law enforcement agencies were involved in the bust. Dozens of agents in Phoenix _ some wearing black hoods over their faces _ swarmed a shuttle business early Thursday in a strip mall in a heavily Latino neighborhood.

No one answered phone calls at two of the accused shuttle businesses, Sergio's Shuttle in Phoenix and Saguaro Roadrunner Shuttles in Tucson. There were no Tucson phone listings for the other three accused shuttle services.

The raids occurred amid a heated debate over immigration in Arizona, the busiest illegal gateway into the United States for several years.

Arizona is on the verge of approving a sweeping anti-immigration law that would make it a crime under state law to be in the country illegally while requiring local police to question people about their immigration status if there is reason to suspect they are here illegally.
(continued)

http://azstarnet.com/news/state-and-regional/...
Ty Madison

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Apr 16, 2010
 

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"This is an intimidating tactic," said Carmen Sanchez. I say if the shoe fits wear it! Actually the presence of ILLEGAL ALIEN BORDER JUMPING gang members, drug smugglers, rapists, pregnant mommies ready to drop an anchor put fear in the Americans. We have a right to be in our country! Try sneaking into North Korea......

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Apr 16, 2010
 

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Video: Officers crack down in Arizona human smuggling probe

posted by : Nancy Kennon on April 16, 2010

http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/blog/id....

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Apr 17, 2010
 

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DPS: 9 taken into custody at southwest Valley drop house

Reported by: Deborah Stocks
Last Update: 4/16 7:17 pm

TOLLESON, AZ -- Authorities say nine people were taken into custody at a suspected drop house in the southwest Valley Friday.

Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman Robert Bailey said officers with IIMPACT were at a house near 99th Avenue and Lower Buckeye Road.

Bailey said six undocumented immigrants and three suspected human smugglers have been taken into custody.

Bailey said there had been another bust at the same location in the past and that the suspects involved in today's bust are part of the same group involved in one earlier today and one last week.

http://www.abc15.com/content/news/westvalley/...

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Apr 17, 2010
 

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DPS nab suspected smuggler during raid at Avondale home

Reported by: Associated Press
Last Update: 4/16 10:21 am

AVONDALE, AZ -- Arizona Department of Public Safety Officers and members of a task force raided an Avondale home Friday morning and arrested a person they believe is a major figure involved in human smuggling.

Officers served a search warrant on a home near 119th Avenue and Buckeye Road in Avondale.

DPS spokesman Bart Graves said DPS and the task force were looking for a man they believe is a significant suspect involved in smuggling illegal immigrants into the United States.

The search warrant follows several weeks of investigation beginning with an initial drop house find.

Then, DPS officers pulled over a truckload of undocumented immigrants after a pursuit a few weeks ago.

The continued investigation led to another drop house last week and eventually to Friday's arrests.

Graves said more arrests are possible.

DPS has not released the name of the smuggler.

http://www.abc15.com/content/news/westvalley/...

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Apr 18, 2010
 

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2,000 referred for deportation since 287(g) put in place

Program allows local authorities to turn over illegal immigrants

By Stephen Gurr
sgurr@gainesvilletimes.com
April 16, 2010

Two years after sheriff’s officials started an immigration enforcement program known as 287(g), some 2,000 people arrested in Hall County while in the country illegally have been turned over to federal officials for possible deportation.

The number of those who have been taken into custody by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement have varied month to month, but appears to be diminishing.

From a peak of 146 in July 2008, Hall County has seen a record low the last two months. In February and again in March, 49 people were taken into custody by ICE at the Hall County Jail. The monthly count has been below 100 since September 2009.

The Hall County Sheriff’s Office became the third law enforcement agency in Georgia — and only the 67th nationwide — to use 287(g) when it began the program in April 2008. It gives designated sheriff’s employees the ability to check the immigration status of people booked into the Hall County Jail and to begin processing them for possible deportation by ICE. The federal government makes the final decision on whether people detained locally on immigration violations will be picked up for deportation proceedings.

In the first year of the program, 1,099 people were picked up by ICE, according to Hall County Sheriff’s records. In the second year, 982 people were transported from the jail by federal officials.

In Cobb County, which has a population of about 700,000 compared to Hall County’s 180,000, some 6,600 people have been picked up by ICE since the county’s sheriff’s office started the program there in July 2007.

Supporters of the program say it has reduced violent crime and drug trafficking in the communities where it is used.

“The real value of 287(g) in addition to the deportation of illegal aliens is its deterrent factor,” said D.A. King, president of the Dustin Inman Society, a group that advocates enforcement of immigration laws.“287(g) is important because it is reducing crime in Georgia, saving tax dollars and creating jobs when illegal aliens leave.”

Alan Shope, chairman of the St. Michael Church Social Justice Committee, said while he respects the Hall County Sheriff’s Office and doesn’t believe deputies are abusing the program through racial profiling, he wishes they would show discretion in who is referred to ICE.

“I think Hall County has been good about not being out looking for people (in the country illegally),” Shope said.“But whenever they arrest them, for whatever reason, they’re going to run them on the ICE computer.

“The program was designed to target the bad guys as opposed to people committing traffic violations,” Shope said.“But Hall County just didn’t want to get into that judgment call.”

Hall County Chief Deputy Jeff Strickland said the sheriff’s office “treats everyone equally.”

“If they’re brought into the jail and their status is checked and we find that they are in the country illegally, we turn them over to ICE,” Strickland said.“We don’t differentiate between the criminal charges.”

Strickland said the numbers of those detained on immigration violations have remained fairly steady, with a slight decrease in recent months. He said since the program’s implementation “we have seen marked decreases in the number of gang members and volume of illegal drugs that were coming into our community by way of illegal aliens.”

In October, following a directive from Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, new standardized Memorandums of Agreement were signed by federal and local officials. The memorandums specify that deportation proceedings be prioritized based on the seriousness of an individual’s criminal offense.
(continued)

http://www.gainesvilletimes.com/news/article/...

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Apr 18, 2010
 

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Prince William Country Extra in Today's Washington Post (of course when I tried to find the article on line, I could not, typical WaPo) announced that eight other communities are joinign us in searching jails for illegals and deporting. One is even a county that the Chair of the Board (now my Congressass) announced when we started our crackdown that his county would not do that - so guess where many went...

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Apr 26, 2010
 

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Feds’ push to seize restaurant a rare one
Illegal workers at heart of French Gourmet case

By Greg Moran,
UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER
April 25, 2010

For more than three decades, The French Gourmet restaurant has been serving high-end cuisine in its 45-seat dining room, catering events across the county, and producing hundreds of wedding cakes annually.

But now the business on Turquoise Avenue in Pacific Beach finds itself the target of federal immigration authorities and prosecutors who want more than just a great Coquille St. Jacques or strawberry bagatelle cake.

In an indictment released last week, the government said it wants the property where the iconic restaurant has done business since 1979.

That move makes the case against The French Gourmet more than a simple immigration enforcement case. Prosecutors could have several reasons for seeking the property, legal experts said. They may want to make a prominent example of the restaurant as they pursue businesses that hire illegal workers. Or perhaps they want to increase the stakes and the pressure to get guilty pleas.

Whatever the reason, such a move is a rare and maybe even unprecedented wrinkle in the federal government’s enforcement program that for the past year has focused on employers who hire illegal workers.

Virginia Kice, a spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said she was unaware of any other instances in which a business was seized as the result of a work-site violation criminal case.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office unsealed the indictment charging owner Michel Malécot, the restaurant corporation that he heads and manager and pastry chef Richard Kauffmann with knowingly hiring undocumented workers.

The indictment seeks criminal forfeiture of the two land parcels the business occupies, which records show have an assessed value of more than $1.3 million.

Malécot and Kauffmann pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy, false attestation and harboring illegal immigrants. The government alleges the restaurant for several years had a “pattern and practice” of hiring illegal immigrants and continued to employ them after being told that the workers’ Social Security numbers were bogus.

On Friday, Malécot said that he was “very shocked” by the indictment and the charges. While he said he has been heartened by an outpouring of support from longtime customers and others, he said he was worried by the specter of losing his business.
(continued)

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2010/apr/2...
T Y Madison

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Apr 26, 2010
 

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Check out in the Nebraska Goverment forum. The article starts with DMV. Our new DL system is definitely working. There are 500 investigations on going as to illegal immigrants and ID theft! Don't tell me the secure DL doesn't work!
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Apr 26, 2010
 

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Illegal Immigrants, National Law, Arizona Foolishness, Sanctuary Cities and... Climate Change Legislation! Wait. WHUT?!?

Waddaya think? Does the title just about cover the debate? Things just got dumber, you know. Immigration Reform is now tied to... Climate Change Legislation?!? Now, just HOW does THAT work?

Well, THIS is how: Senator Lindsay Graham just pulled his support for the debate of climate Change Legislation (for the DEBATE, now... NOT the legislation), because... the Obama Administration wants to take up the matter of Illegal Immigrantion, as Senator Lindsay Graham ASKED THEM TO just a few weeks ago.

http://news.gather.com/viewArticle.action...

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Apr 27, 2010
 

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PD: 25 undocumented immigrants found at Phoenix drop house

by: Katie Fisher
4/26 11:19 pm

PHOENIX -- A good samaritan is credited with helping police locate a west Phoenix drop house Monday night where they found more than two dozen undocumented immigrants.

Phoenix Police Department spokesman Lt. John White said 25 undocumented immigrants, including three alleged "coyotes," were found at the home near Thomas Road and 83rd Avenue.

An elderly man reportedly called police around 7 p.m., saying that he'd been approached in a Circle K store by a young Hispanic male who appeared to have been running and wasn't wearing shoes.

The young man reportedly told the older man he'd escaped from a drop house where he and dozens of others were being kept against their will. He also told the man everyone in the house had been threatened with bodily harm if they did not pay $3,000 to the "coyotes."

The escapee fled the scene before police arrived.

According to White, officers located the alleged drop house which matched a description provided by the good samaritan at Circle K.

Police surrounded the home and entered the residence, where they reportedly found 25 people, including a woman and two teens, hiding on the second floor of the house.

The undocumented immigrants were turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.

White said Monday's bust exemplified why police are concerned about the "evolving" nature of drop houses.

The house had slabs of drywall inside the windows as opposed to wood planks, which typically alert police and neighbors to the presence of a drop house.

http://www.abc15.com/content/news/phoenixmetr...

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Apr 28, 2010
 

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Suit targets ICE's Secure Communities
By Diana Washington Valdez \ El Paso Times
Posted: 04/28/2010 12:00:00 AM MDT

EL PASO -- The Center for Constitutional Rights filed suit Tuesday seeking records about the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Secure Communities program.

The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in New York City.

"Contrary to its name, this latest ICE program makes the public less safe," said Sunita Patel, a lawyer for the center in New York. "There is no doubt that the program has and will continue to deepen fear and mistrust of the police in our communities."

ICE Secure Communities partners in the region include the El Paso County Sheriff's Office and sheriff's offices in Hudspeth, Doña Ana and Otero counties. The Texas Department of Public Safety is also a partner, according to the ICE Web site.

The partnerships enable local law-enforcement agencies to access databases, which include information on immigration status of people they detain.

The National Day Laborer Organizing Network in Los Angeles and the Immigration Justice Clinic of the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in New York joined the lawsuit. In February, the organizations filed a Freedom of Information Act request for details about the program, but ICE has not released the records.

The organizations allege that the rapid expansion of Secure Communities is cause for alarm. They said hardly any information has been made available on error rates, costs, oversight, accountability, racial profiling and civil-rights complaints.

Secure Communities partnerships operate in 168 jurisdictions in 20 states, and more agreements are expected.

"This is a massive, invasive and untested federal immigration enforcement program that ICE has been deceptive and secretive about from the start," said Bridget Kessler, a fellow with the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law Immigration Justice Clinic. "Without more information, we cannot allow for the spread of this dangerous ICE program."

Contrary to what some immigration advocates allege, said Leticia Zamarripa, spokeswoman for ICE in El Paso, Secure Communities does not give local law enforcement officers the authority to enforce federal immigration laws.

Instead, ICE officials said, new technology makes it possible to check a suspect's fingerprints against the Department of Homeland Security's biometric database. Biometrics can include fingerprints, handprints, DNA information and face recognition.

"This technology and the use of biometrics helps to more accurately and efficiently confirm a suspect's identity because, unlike a name or date of birth, biometrics are almost impossible to forge," according to the national ICE Web site.

Under the program, fingerprints are checked against the FBI's Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System and the Department of Homeland Security's Automated Biometric Identification System-US-VISIT Program. A search can be done within hours.
(continued)

http://www.elpasotimes.com/news/ci_14972284

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Apr 28, 2010
 

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Customs Inspectors detain 16 Illegal Immigrants

Customs and Border Protection Inspectors detected 16 people that tried to cross into the United States with fraudulent documents.

April 28, 2010
LAREDO SUN

LAREDO, Tx.- Customs and Border Protection Inspectors detected 16 people that tried to cross into the United States with fraudulent documents this past weekend.

The arrests were made on the international bridges for violating immigration laws, some demonstrated false documents and others made false declarations.

Federal spokeswoman, Margarita Rodríguez, stated that in four cases, the imposters presented resident cards that did not belong to them, 11 carried visas laser that did not pertain to them and the other two declared they were American citizens.

One of the cases occurred on the Gateway to the Americas bridge, where a 20 year old arrived on foot as he intended to cross into the United States.

The subject presented a legal resident card and as authorities noticed discrepancies on the document, he was sent to secondary where officials determined he was an undocumented Mexican, originally from the state of Hidalgo.

http://www.laredosun.us/notas.asp...

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Apr 28, 2010
 

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69 illegal immigrants found at Phoenix drop house

April 27, 2010

Federal authorities say 69 suspected illegal immigrants, including two children and an infant, have been rescued from a drop house in Phoenix.

A neighbor called police about 12:30 p.m. Tuesday and said he'd seen a pickup dropping off about 30 people Monday evening. Responding officers found the people inside the house and turned the case over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Detectives believed those inside are undocumented immigrants at a stop on their way from Mexico. ICE spokesman Vincent Picard say there were no reports of mistreatment and no coyotes or human smuggling operatives were arrested.

http://azstarnet.com/news/state-and-regional/...

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Apr 30, 2010
 

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Police raid drophouse where immigrants were beaten

Apr. 29, 2010 01:36 PM
Associated Press

The Arizona Department of Public Safety and Phoenix police raided a drophouse in west Phoenix on Thursday.

DPS spokesman Bart Graves tells the Associated Press that 12 people were found inside the house, including three suspected smugglers and nine undocumented immigrants.

Graves said the victims were beaten and threatened inside the residence for about a week near 87th Avenue and Palm Lane.

Graves said an out-of-state phone tip to Phoenix police led to the drophouse. A relative told police one of the victims said he was being beaten and held for ransom.

The victims are being handed over to federal immigration officials, and the suspected smugglers are being taken to jail.

http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2010/0...

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Apr 30, 2010
 

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596 immigrants convicted of crimes nabbed in South

By: GREG BLUESTEIN
Associated Press
04/30/10 12:30 PM EDT

ATLANTA — Federal agents say they arrested 596 immigrants with criminal records during a three-day immigration enforcement sweep across the Southeast in their biggest operation yet.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said Friday the three-day operation — dubbed Operation Cross Check — was the largest sweep the agency has ever conducted targeting foreign nationals convicted of crimes. They said the immigrants have already served their sentences and that authorities will now seek to deport them.

Atlanta ICE Field Director Felicia Skinner says that "communities around the Southeast are safer than they were before" as a result of the operation. She said three of the people arrested this week were convicted of murder and 144 were convicted on assault charges.

On the Net:

http://www.ice.gov

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/nation/596-...

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May 3, 2010
 

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ICE arrests hundreds of criminal aliens throughout the South…MSM ignores

May 2,2010
Immigration Reform Examiner
Dave Gibson

While the mainstream press has been covering the illegal alien marches and protest rallies, and touting the virtues of these ‘willing workers,’ federal law enforcement officers were still dealing with the painful truth…a good deal of illegal aliens are dangerous criminals.

Over several days, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the U.S. Marshals Service, Border Patrol, and local law enforcement conducted raids in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Puerto Rico. Most of the arrests took place in Florida, Puerto Rico, and Atlanta, Ga.

The ICE press release, lists two of the worst offenders and their crimes:

“-Oriel Bernard McCarthy, of Jamaica, was arrested Tuesday by the Atlanta Fugitive Operation Team in Jonesboro, Georgia. McCarthy was recently arrested for aggravated assault and possession of a weapon during the commission of a crime. McCarthy's criminal history includes convictions and arrests in four states, including New York, South Carolina, Maryland and Georgia for crimes including felony forgery, stalking, criminal domestic violence, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and manufacture, aggravated assault, sexual abuse and forcible contact, possession of stolen property, and robbery. He was ordered removed by an immigration judge on October 21, 2009 in New York City.

-Jose Oscar Avalo-Molina, of El Salvador, was arrested Wednesday by the Miami Fugitive Operations Team in Pembroke Park, Florida. Avalo-Molina's criminal convictions include first degree murder for which he was sentenced to 20 years in prison. On Feb. 28, 1991, he was ordered removed to El Salvador by an Immigration Judge. Avalo-Molina was removed on Aug. 13, 1997 and subsequently illegally re-entered. This case has been accepted by the U.S. Attorney's Office for prosecution for the crime of re-entry after deportation.”

According to ICE, during 2009 alone, they removed 136,126 criminal aliens from the United States.

http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-35821-Immi...

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