Sweep for Criminal Aliens, Immigration Fugitives Includes Arrests Near the Pass

A nationwide crackdown included more than a dozen arrests in Riverside County in communities such as Hemet and Moreno Valley. There were no arrests in the San Gorgonio Pass.

Officials with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement - also known as ICE - announced Monday the arrests of more than 3,100 convicted criminal aliens, immigration fugitives and immigration violators, including individuals arrested in Hemet and Moreno Valley.

There were 15 arrests in Riverside County, 14 arrests in San Bernardino County, and more than 200 total in the greater Los Angeles area as part of the nationwide crackdown, ICE officials said. There were no arrests in the San Gorgonio Pass.

The arrests were described by ICE officials as part of the agency's "ongoing commitment to prioritizing the removal of criminal aliens and egregious immigration law violators."

The six-day operation involved more than 1,900 ICE officers and agents from 24 field offices, assistance from ICE Homeland Security Investigations, and coordination with other federal, state and local law enforcement  agencies, ICE officials said. Arrests were made in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and three U.S. territories.

Nationwide, 2,834 arrested individuals had prior criminal convictions, including at least 1,063 aliens who had multiple criminal convictions, ICE officials said.

"Of those arrested, 1,477 had felony convictions including murder, manslaughter, attempted murder, kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, armed robbery, terroristic threats, drug trafficking, child abuse, battery on a child, sexual crimes against minors, and aggravated assault," ICE officials said.

The arrestees also included 50 documented gang members and 149 convicted sex offenders, according to ICE.

Of the 206 individuals taken into custody in the Los Angeles area, 106 had prior convictions for serious or violent crimes, ICE officials said. Los Angeles County accounted for the largest number of arrests with 124, followed by Orange County, 34, Riverside County, 15, San Bernardino County, 14, Ventura County, 10, and Santa Barbara County, 9.

"More than 70 of those arrested locally during the operation have already been removed from the United States," ICE officials said.

Because of their criminal histories and prior immigration arrest records, more than 200 of those arrested nationwide during the enforcement action were presented to U.S attorneys for prosecution on charges including illegal re-entry after deportation, a felony which carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison, ICE officials said.

Names of the people arrested were not released Monday by ICE officials in Los Angeles.

Arrests were made in communities near the San Gorgonio Pass including Desert Hot Springs, Cathedral City, Palm Desert and Thermal, according to ICE spokeswoman Virginia C. Kice.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is the largest investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security. For more information, visit:  www.ICE.gov. To report suspicious activity, call 1 (866) 347-2423.

Mariana Zuelsdorf April 03, 2012 at 05:17 PM
I hope those arrested are jailed and not just released for deportation. Deportation just means they will be back in the US shortly. Technically, anyone who illegally crosses our sovereign borders is a criminal


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