Homeland Security has now begun evaluating the seriousness of the crime before deciding to deport illegal immigrants. According to Jeh Johnson, the Director of Homeland Security, “lower-tier criminals” such as drunken drivers and drug dealers aren’t the highest priority on the list of people to deport.
The new priorities came in a memo that outlined guidelines for the nation’s immigration officers working to administer President Barack Obama’s new executive order for amnesty.
The new rules have raised a furor in Washington and beyond. But as Johnson wrote, “In general, our enforcement and removal policies should continue to prioritize threats to national security, public safety, and border security, Due to limited resources, DHS and its components cannot respond to all immigration violations or remove all persons illegally in the United States.”
Many lawmakers in Washington are demanding that anyone committing a crime, felony’s being a given, be immediately deported. Immigration authorities presently say felons are deported, as well as terror suspects, reports The Washington Examiner.
Lower-level criminals are considered secondary priorities, meaning an illegal immigrant can be in prison for up to a year for a violent crime but still not be considered a primary removal priority. The entire process is now in utter confusion with President Obama’s new executive order providing amnesty for up to six million illegal immigrants already in the country.
Johnson states there are three priorities for people who are to be detained. The first priority, or people to be sent out of country first, are “aliens engaged in or suspected of terrorism or espionage, or who otherwise pose a danger to national security,” according to the memo.
Others affected by the new rules are people trying to “unlawfully enter” the country. Also immigrants convicted of felonies, if the immigrant status is “not an essential element” of the offense, and those convicted of an aggravated felony are to be prioritized for deportation.
However, the Priority One status immigrants could have their deportations delayed, If they qualify for asylum or there are factors showing they are not a threat, they could remain indefinitely in the U.S.
The Priority Two offenders include people guilty of a “significant misdemeanor.” however that will be defined, which includes domestic violence or sexual offenders, burglars, people guilty of gun offenses, drug dealers, or drunken drivers.
A “significant misdemeanor” is defined as a person that can be sentenced to a maximum of one year in jail, but not less than five days. The sentences can vary wildly. That status also includes “aliens convicted of three or more misdemeanor offenses” other than traffic offenses.
It is obvious the rules are coming from another massive bureaucracy; this one known as Homeland Security.
The final priority is the most nebulous. These are people who simply violated immigration laws. They may be allowed to stay if an officer determines they are not a threat to the United States and its laws.
But even those falling within Priority One designation are not to be targeted for immediate deportation, Johnson says in the memo. It comes down to individual officers and their determination of the crime or crimes.
Whatever the case, there must be “compelling and exceptional factors that clearly indicate the alien is not a threat to national security, border security, or public safety and should not therefore be an enforcement priority.”
These new rules supposedly make infractions “clearer” for all law enforcement. Again, Homeland Security is a massive government bureaucracy and the above rules will lead to thousands of extra courtroom hours and millions to the lawyers who defend such illegals at American taxpayer expense.
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