Immigration removal proceedings are up 110% in the last 5 years, according to data released by the Syracuse University-based Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), as reported by The Washington Independent.
Prosecutions referred by the Immigration and Customs Agency, or ICE, were up dramatically in June 2009 — a 47 percent increase from May 2009, and a 109.6 percent increase from five years ago.
According to TRAC, which bases its studies on data released from the Justice Department, 89 percent of the June cases were classified as “immigration” prosecutions, while less than 7 percent were for drug trafficking.
Anti-immigration advocates have argued that immigration reform featuring a legalization component cannot proceed until the government shows it is enforcing existing laws. However, this statistic regarding removal proceedings seems to clearly show that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is already enforcing immigration rules.
This statistic may also, however, support the complaint of immigrants’ advocates that the Obama administration has been cracking down hard on illegal immigration while doing nothing to offer them a path to legalization and create a workable immigration system.
In May 2009, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano pledged to focus her agency’s efforts on lawbreaking by employers of illegal immigrants, rather than on prosecuting the immigrants themselves.
A detailed breakdown of the latest Justice Department data can be found here.
If you or a loved one require legal assistance with a removal or deportation or other immigration law matter, contact us to schedule your initial consultation with an experienced immigration attorney today. Our immigration lawyers represent clients throughout Fairfax, Arlington, Alexandria, Manassas, Woodbridge and all of Northern Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.