Officers from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) arrested 331 individuals during a monthlong operation targeting criminal aliens and other immigration violators in six Midwestern states.
This operation, which began May 9 and concluded last week, is the latest effort by ICE to arrest and remove convicted criminal aliens. The arrests were made in the following six states: Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Kansas and Missouri.
ERO officers arrested 39 individuals throughout Wisconsin. All 39 males have been convicted of crimes in the United States including: illegal possession of a firearm by a felon, carrying a concealed weapon, battery, domestic abuse, 4th degree sexual assault, drugs, and drunken driving. Four of the 39 were previously deported from the United States and illegally re-entered.
Those arrested in Wisconsin are from the following countries: Mexico (37), Cuba (1), and El Salvador (1). The majority were arrested in Green Bay (12), Milwaukee (5) and Sturgeon Bay (5). Additional arrests took place in the following communities: Beloit, De Pere, Fond du Lac, Janesville, Jefferson, Kenosha, Madison, Manitowoc, New Franken, Pulaski, Racine, Seymour, Sheboygan, Unity, and Waunakee.
Immigrant rights group, Voces de la Frontera released a statement calling the action by ICE a continuing campaign to traumatize families, rob children of their parents and making immigrant community members afraid to cooperate with law enforcement.
“In these raids ICE arrested the son-in-law of one of our members, and the only offense on his record is a 10-year-old conviction for working with a made-up Social Security Number. He is not a threat to anyone. His crime was working to support his wife and 2 children, and he was only arrested because of a racist, Arizona-type workplace raid, where ICE went to the Star Packaging Factory in Whitewater in 2006 and racially profiled all the Latino workers. Contrary to what ICE claims, he is not a priority for deportation. He is a victim of civil rights violations and his case should be closed immediately”, said Christine Neumann-Ortiz, Executive Director of Voces de la Frontera.
Following are two case examples of those arrested in Wisconsin during this operation:
· A 32-year-old Mexican national with prior convictions for domestic abuse, criminal damage to property, and hit and run involving injury. He was arrested May 10 in Beloit and remains in ICE custody pending deportation proceedings.
· A previously deported 37-year-old Mexican national with prior convictions for domestic abuse, theft, and 4th degree sexual assault. He was arrested May 10 in Green Bay and was removed to Mexico May 27.
“Our dedicated officers strive to make our communities safer by arresting convicted criminal aliens and removing them from the United States,” said Ricardo Wong, field officer director for ERO Chicago. “By focusing our resources on the most egregious offenders, we ensure the very best use of our resources while immediately improving public safety.”
ICE received assistance during the Wisconsin operation from the following agencies: Green Bay Police Department’s Gang Task Force, the Wisconsin Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), and the Brown County Sheriff’s Department.
Those arrested who have outstanding orders of deportation, or who returned to the United States illegally after being deported, are subject to immediate removal from the country. The remaining individuals are in ICE custody awaiting a hearing before an immigration judge, or pending travel arrangements for removal in the near future.
All of those apprehended during this operation were immigration enforcement priorities as outlined in Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson’s 2014 memorandum.