Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Illegal Alien Sanctuaries Are Criminal

Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) introduced the Immigration Enforcement and Border Security Act (S. 1984) to assist in the prevention of repeat criminal offenses by Illegal Aliens. A major provision of this legislation would require the identification of Illegal Aliens detained in US Jails. Once identified, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would take custody of the Illegal Aliens for processing and deportation.

Senator Kyl explains the Legislation in an article he authored (Stop the Illegal Sanctuaries), published today at National Review Online (NRO). The Senator presents startling statistics concerning repeat crimes committed by Illegal Aliens.
A Government Accountability Office study found that 55,322 criminal aliens were arrested a total of at least 459,614 times, averaging over eight arrests per alien. The Department of Justice expressed its surprise at the “extremely high” rate of re-arrests for criminal aliens when it found that that [sic] 73 criminal aliens in a study group were arrested a total of 429 times.
This legislation is important because so many Cities have declared themselves Sanctuaries for Illegal Aliens. These Sanctuary Cities do not ask or check the immigration status of anyone, thereby allowing Illegal Aliens to continue to commit more crimes.
Localities that fail to cooperate with DHS in identifying criminal aliens in their custody may end up paying a steep price. They ensure that criminal aliens who could otherwise be deported, are released back into the community to commit further crimes, which they do at an astonishing rate.
In addition to identifying Illegal Aliens already in the US, some criminals are currently caught at our border. The following figures illustrate the need to strengthen our Borders to effectively deal with additional Border Security Problems. But that's a subject for another post. (Here for example)
In FY06, the Border Patrol apprehended 142,365 criminal aliens on the borders. Of that number, 20,480 had committed major crimes, including homicide (444), kidnapping (145), sexual assault (523), robbery (947), assault (6,276), and drug crimes (12,730).
However, once in the US, the problems are compounded by Cities that have created Sanctuaries for Illegal Aliens. And DHS shares responsibility for the problems created by the Illegal Alien population.
Despite complaints by many local sheriffs that DHS neglects their calls for assistance with alien suspects, DHS has failed to take significant nationwide steps to identify, detain, and remove criminal aliens in local custody. This failing is in part due to resources — like border enforcement, interior enforcement has been under-funded for decades — but it is also the result of policy choices within DHS. DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff recently announced that the administration would pursue a number of immigration enforcement reforms. Those reforms should be expanded to include targeting and removing criminal aliens in all jurisdictions throughout the country.
The Legislation Senator Kyl has introduced is a start towards controlling the Illegal Aliens (especially the repeat Criminals). It is also another step in the securing our Borders against the burgeoning Illegal Alien drain on US social programs.

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