From Daily Mail: The Department of Homeland Security says that so-called sanctuary states shielded dozens of alleged MS-13 gang members from deportation during an eight-month period between 2016 and 2017.
The findings were provided to the Senate Judiciary Committee by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) – the federal agency responsible for deporting undocumented migrants illegal aliens.
According to ICE, two-thirds of the 142 suspected gang members that ICE wanted to deport were released in California.
The data was reported by the anti-immigrant (no bias there, Daily Mail) think tank Center for Immigration Studies.
California has a sanctuary policy that is considered one of the most progressive in the country. Sanctuary policies are local guidelines in which state and local authorities limit their cooperation with the federal government in enforcing immigration laws.
ICE says that the releases of the alleged MS-13 gang members took place in 37 local jurisdictions across 13 states. The most releases of alleged gang members – 22 – took place in Santa Clara County, California.
San Diego County leaders voted on Tuesday to join the Trump administration’s court challenge to California’s sanctuary law, amid a conservative backlash to the so-called sanctuary movement.
California moved to the forefront of political opposition to Republican President Donald Trump’s crackdown on illegal immigration with enactment last year of the first statewide law aimed at restricting local law enforcement participation in federal deportation activity.
The measure bars state and local authorities from keeping undocumented immigrants illegal aliens who are incarcerated locked up any longer than otherwise necessary for the purpose of allowing US immigration agents to take them into custody.
It also prohibits police from routinely inquiring about the immigration status of people detained in an investigation or in traffic stops.
But the law, known as SB-54, allows local police to notify the federal government if they have arrested an undocumented immigrant illegal aliens with a felony record and permits immigration agents access to local jails.
The Trump administration has harshly criticized California’s law and similar sanctuary ordinances adopted by local governments across the country, saying they threaten public safety by protecting criminals who should to be deported.
Of the 37 jurisdictions that allegedly released MS 13 gang members, all but one of them – Maricopa County, Arizona – are sanctuary localities.
Authorities in Maryland have had to deal with the largest number of suspected MS 13 figures. ICE figures show that Montgomery County released five MS-13 members while Prince George’s County released four.
Between 2012 and 2018, 84 alleged MS-13 members were arrested for gang-related activity.