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Last Friday, U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement announced it was terminating memorandums of understanding it had entered into with 39 states regarding its Secure Communities program. The program itself, however, is not changing.

Under Secure Communities, the FBI gathers fingerprints taken by local authorities during routine arrests and makes them available to Immigration. The prints can then be compared against an immigration database to determine whether an arrestee can be deported, either due to the nature of the crime or because the person is found to be in the country illegally.

According to Immigration, the program has grown from 14 local jurisdictions in 2008 to cover over 1,300 today. The agreements, a sample of which can be found here, have brought criticism about inconsistency in the program’s application and deception in their adoption. Illinois, Massachusetts, and New York recently attempted to terminate their agreements as allowed under the memorandums.

Immigration responded by cancelling all such agreements, while maintaining that they could continue to operate the program without the consent of state or local authorities. “[Immigration] has determined that a [memorandum] is not required to activate or operate Secure Communities for any jurisdiction,” wrote Immigration director John Morton.

“Once a state or local law enforcement agency voluntarily submits fingerprint data to the federal government, no agreement with the state is legally necessary for one part of the federal government to share it with another part.”

While participation in the program was initially believed to be voluntary, officials now see inclusion as mandatory. While about half the country participates now (including complete coverage along the southern border), Immigration is targeting 100 percent participation nationwide by 2013.

Defending the database cross-referencing program, Immigration says it has limited funding available to deport more than 10 million individuals estimated to reside in the U.S. illegally. It claims on its website that, by prioritizing deportation efforts according to instances of criminal arrest, Secure Communities has led to a 71 percent increase in the number of convicted criminals expelled from the country.

“Through April 30, 2011, more than 77,000 immigrants convicted of crimes, including more than 28,000 convicted of aggravated felony (level 1) offenses like murder, rape and the sexual abuse of children were removed from the United States after identification through Secure Communities,” says Immigration.

Detractors say the program effectively turns local police into federal immigration officers, forcing them to spend extra time processing and holding detainees until Immigration can respond to immigration violations. Some also say the program could deter the undocumented from reporting crimes, particularly in domestic violence incidents, where both parties are often detained until the situation can be assessed.

San Francisco Sheriff Michael Hennessey says he intends to defy the requirements of the program. Speaking to the San Francisco Examiner, Hennessey says that his office will not detain criminals charged with minor crimes that generally result in citation and release, even if ordered to detain them on immigration charges by Immigration.

“The city of refuge law says we are not supposed to comply with federal officials except with felonies. I’m just doing our best to enforce local law. That’s my job,” says Hennessey, citing San Francisco’s status as a “sanctuary city.”

From June 2010 through February 2011, the Examiner says 111 people were deported after being identified through Secure Communities for no crime other than entering the country illegally. 85 were deported for low-level offenses such as shoplifting, drinking in public, or drug possession, and 45 deported were guilty of felonies.

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Comments

Brittanicus Aug. 9, 2011 @ 4:11 p.m.

IS A THIRD PARTY RISING FROM THE ASHES??

When the America people have enough of the illegal immigration occupation, they need to speak up and use their vote as a fulcrum. The small country of Denmark hit pay dirt, by enforcing harsh immigration laws and was able save its citizens $10 billion dollars over a decade. Denmark is hardly larger than the state of Ohio in size with all its islands, but its tough immigration laws has reduced the financial pressure on its people. So why it is with the vast resources and manpower this sovereign nation has at its grasp, yet we cannot remove these illegal workers and their large families—or decline. It’s obvious to any far-sighted taxpayer a permanent E-Verify nationwide, have this capacity to evict illegal workers. Voters must moreover stop the Justice Department from rescinding the “Secure communities” law and mandate this innovation across the country.

The TEA PARTY in Ames, Iowa and nationwide will change the disturbing route that America is going with overpopulation, crumbling infrastructure, unemployment and unrelenting immigration laws. Any state should not be a scapegoat, for the intentional or unconcerned inability, there failure of the U.S government, to ignore the people's wishes when in comes to cutting of public entitlements to foreign nationals.

E-Verify aids in rejecting illegal foreigners stealing jobs in the workplace and Secure Communities determines by fingerprint procedures, alerting ICE to criminals and re-entries after deportations. We can start the repatriation of foreigners using these methods, with sweeping audits by ICE. Businesses should face harsh criminal charges for hiring illegal aliens, with 6 figure fines and time in prison. Congress could simplifying the whole mess inherited over thirty years, to enact illegal entry as a--FELONY--and use Alabama's example that those without legal standing, within its State borders should also be convicted of a felony. American can no longer be passive on this out-of-control issue, as illegal immigration is causing near bankruptcy amongst the states. Currently, federal government and its states are 113 Billion dollars a year that is being extorted from taxpayers to cater to people from across the globe, as reported by The Federation of American Immigration Reform?

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Brittanicus Aug. 9, 2011 @ 4:13 p.m.

Incredulously open-border Democrats have turned a blind eye to aliens voting in all elections, especially that will sure to happen in 2012, when we must be on our guard as citizens. Read more about the increase in Voter Fraud across the 50 states. Charging persons with a felony would mean no more overcrowded schools, no free education for the children and the breakdown of our emergency hospitals.

With Washington under the legislators in the TEA PARTY there will be no hesitation, in enforcing the E-Verify or Secure Communities--that Homeland Security has notified they are rescinding the later law. The Tea Party will reject any form of administration amnesty, which is a link CHAIN MIGRATION. The TEA PARTY has become a massive grassroots movement of millions of concurring Americans from all racial, religious backgrounds and political parties. The TEA PARTY members share the nucleus principles of restricted government, individual freedoms, personal responsibility, fair free markets and above all else returning power to the States and the people. The TEA PARTY is about reforming all political parties and government, so the key principles of our Constitution, once again is the foundation of which this nation stands.

Hopefully the Iowa straw-poll places Rep. Michele Bachmann, the TEA PARTY chairman remains a strong presidential contender. With her strong Moderate Conservative convictions, she has refused to become part of the "old boys club" in either party. In fact the lady didn't vote in lifting the debt ceiling by another $2.5 Trillion dollars. 2012 will be a “Make or break” year for America in doing the same thing and repeating the same mistakes. Bachmann backbone will not bend to the greed in Washington, and will not be intimidated by corporate lobbyists or the establishment. It wasn’t President Obama or the Majority of Democrats, which caused the massive problem that this country, must now face. But Sen. Harry Reid, who cut off any chance of debate in the discretionary spending when the Senate voted to “table,” a House Republican proposal to “not give the time of day” to “Cut, Cap and Balance”. Reid of Nevada has one of the largest populations of illegal household, next to the Sanctuary state of California.

MY EARLIER BLOGS: http://brittanicus-enoughisenough.blogspot.com/

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