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ICE Detention facilities provide luxuries for those awaiting deportation

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is charged with implementing the nation’s immigration laws and part of that responsibility includes detaining and deporting those who break the law. However, the Obama Administration, ICE Director, John Morton, and DHS Secretary, Janet Napolitano made changes to the process and will provide a litany of “special perks” for those who break the law.

The 355-page detainee manual includes benefits like special meals, female hormone treatment for transgender detainees, abortions, undisclosed medical treatment, “ethnically appropriate” meals, unfettered access to interpreters and legal services, access to preferred-religious materials, and mental health services. The extensive manual provides many perks that American citizen prisoners do not receive, according to Congressman Lamar Smith (R-TX).

The detention facilities must also provide illegal immigrants with a wide variety of recreation and exercise options. Lawbreakers can choose from soccer, basketball, volleyball and an exercise gym. If they want to relax they can choose to read a book in their native language, watch television, play games or entertain visitors.

Rep. Smith likened the new requirements to a “hospitality guideline for illegal immigrants.” He also laments the new detainment standards as unnecessary and “far and beyond” U.S. law requirements.

“The administration goes beyond common sense to accommodate illegal immigrants and treats them better than citizens in federal custody,” Rep. Smith said in a February 2012 statement. “The new detention manual contains extensive and customized details for each illegal immigrant’s stay, regulating everything from the salad bar to recreational activities to medical care. This new manual is not a surprise – it’s just part of a broader pattern made by the Obama administration to reward lawbreakers. This administration has already granted backdoor amnesty to potentially millions of illegal immigrants and has appointed a taxpayer-funded advocate to lobby for them.”

Rep. Smith contends the Obama administration “puts illegal immigrants ahead of the interests of American citizens and taxpayers.”

There is an Immigration Subcommittee oversight hearing scheduled for later this month.

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© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

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ICE hires new Public advocate to assist illegal aliens

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has stepped up its policy regarding the deportation process that infuriated those with “open-borders” advocacy groups.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) continue to tweak and slow the process for those in ongoing detention and removal proceedings. The administration’s new initiative policy department announced its first Public Advocate, ICE Senior Advisor Andrew Lorenzen-Strait.

Mr. Lorenzen-Strait will assist individuals, including those in immigration proceedings, NGOs as well as other advocacy groups concerned with detention removal of illegal aliens.

“As our first Public Advocate, Andrew Lorenzen-Strait will work to expand and enhance our dialogue with the stakeholder community,” said ICE Director John Morton. “We want the public to know that they have a representative at this agency whose sole duty is to ensure their voice is heard and their interests are recognized, and I’m confident Andrew will serve the community well in this capacity.”

Lorenzen-Strait’s prior experience as an analyst for policies related to immigration enforcement, detention and juveniles and senior advisor for Enforcement and Removal Operation’s (ERO) detention management division makes him the perfect choice to assume community liaison duties with ICES. Lorenzen-Strait’s private sector experience with Community Legal Services of Prince George’s County provides valuable real-world knowledge to alleviate immigration proceedings.

Morton said Lorenzen-Strait will report directly to the Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) director and will be responsible for:

• Assisting individuals and community stakeholders in addressing and resolving complaints and concerns in accordance with agency policies and operations, particularly concerns related to ICE enforcement actions involving U.S. citizens;

• Informing stakeholders on ERO policies, programs, and initiatives and enhance understanding of ERO’s mission and core values;

• Engaging stakeholders and building partnerships to facilitate communication, foster collaboration, and solicit input on immigration enforcement initiatives and operations; and

• Advising ICE leadership on stakeholder findings, concerns, recommendations, and priorities as they relate to improving immigration enforcement efforts and activities.

The newly created position highlights ICE’s ongoing work to enact significant policy changes and improvements to the immigration enforcement process. ICE also renewed its policy to speed up immigration proceedings in an effort to promote public safety, border security and the integrity of the immigration system.

However, illegal immigration activist groups contend this new policy is nothing more than amnesty and will only encourage those entering the U.S. illegally to cut in the long immigration wait-list line.

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© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

Illegal alien released from custody rapes 13-year-old girl

A Virginia Congressman asked the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide local law enforcement agencies with access to digital fingerprints for all criminal, illegal aliens. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) announced that funding to digitize the fingerprints of all criminal, illegal immigrants be included in the DHS 2012 spending bill.

Wolf is asking Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to improve its Secure Communities database after a criminal illegal alien was arrested for public drunkenness, but later released when his fingerprints were not identified by law enforcement computers.

Salvador Portillo-Saravia, a known MS-13 gang member, was rearrested just four weeks later for raping an 8-year-old girl in Virginia. Last October, Portillo-Saravia pled guilty on two felony charges of rape of a victim under 13, as well as sodomy. Courts will sentence Portillo-Saravia next month.

“This tragic incident identified a critical shortcoming in the Secure Communities program: immigration fingerprints taken on paper prior to 2005 were often not included in the database,” Wolf said in a statement. “Unfortunately, many local law enforcement agencies were unaware of this gap in the system and that manual searches were still necessary.”

The House Appropriations Committee promptly responded to Rep. Wolf’s request to ensure criminal illegal aliens fingerprints are properly digitized and added the necessary funding to update the database.

“The Secure Communities database is an important resource for state and local law enforcement,” Wolf said. “I will continue to work to ensure this system is operating as it was intended (in order) to help protect our communities.”

The following is the illegal alien digitized fingerprint language included in the FY 2012 bill;

Improving Immigration Enforcement Activities

A total of $12,000,000 above the request is provided to improve immigration enforcement
activities, of which $5,000,000 is included in Secure Communities for digitization of paper fingerprint cards from legacy immigration files. Both the House and Senate reports outlined areas for focus (such as) developing a comprehensive strategy to address the visa overstay problem, modernizing the Alien Criminal Response Information Management System (ACRIMe) to support the identification of criminal aliens and individuals attempting to overstay a visa, enhancing ICE capabilities for law enforcement support for immigration- related inquiries from State and local law enforcement, and digitizing old fingerprint records. ICE is directed to brief the Committees, with US-VISIT and other DHS components as appropriate, on its plan for utilization of these funds, no later than 60 days after the date of enactment of this Act. ICE is also directed, in conjunction with US-VISIT and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), to report to the Committees no later than 120 days e ate of enactment of this Act on the methodology of prioritizing files for the digitization effort as well as the overall projected cost of the project to ensure electronic availability of appropriate biometrics in IDENT.

Digitization Efforts

USCIS, ICE, and the Executive Office of Immigration Review are directed to brief the Committees on use of digitized records, as required in the House report, no later than March I, 2012. USCIS is also directed to provide no less than $29,000,000 to continue conversion of immigration records to digital format.

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© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

New Secure Communities immigration report shows Warren Institute liberal bias

Now that the GOP presidential candidates opened the proverbial immigration can of worms, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) decided to reexamine a Warren Institute study that is being touted on both sides of the political aisle.

Looking at ICE’s Secure Communities program, CIS found the Warren Institute report (located at the University of California, Berkeley Law School) is misleading. CIS released its first in a three-part series report using the identical database that the Warren Institute’s analyzed.

After obtaining the documents from a Freedom of Information Act request, CIS concluded the Institute report contained factual flaws.

CIS contends that the Warren Institute obtained the ICE records and those documents reveal a disturbing pattern of abuse of authority by Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE). The Warren Institute further claims ICE participated in numerous unlawful actions including; wrongful arrests of thousands of U.S. citizens, a pattern of racial profiling against Latinos, and denial of due process for aliens in removal proceedings.

The allegations made by the Warren Institute has since made main-stream media headlines as well as captured many Congressional members attention.

While the Center for Immigration Studies agrees “the ICE database does provide an interesting and relatively rare snapshot of the actual Secure Communities caseload,” they found that the records they reexamined didn’t support any allegations that ICE abused their authority.

Some of the results from the CIS study include;

* The database contains no records of U.S. citizens who were detained by or for ICE. It is impossible to assert based on this data, as the critics have, that thousands of U.S. citizens, or any number of U.S. citizens, have been arrested by ICE through Secure Communities.
* The Warren Institute report contains serious methodological and interpretive errors that lead its authors to unsubstantiated conclusions and cast doubt on the credibility of the entire analysis. For example, the authors analyzed only 23 percent of the original random sample requested from ICE.
* ICE’s failure to counter the report’s misleading statements is contributing to the spread of misconceptions about Secure Communities among the media, state and local leaders, and the public. This raises doubts as to the agency leaders’ commitment to full and effective implementation of the program.
* We agree with the Warren Institute authors on the issue of the need for improved transparency at ICE and its parent Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

The first set of findings can be found online at

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

Getting married to legalize those illegally in the country remains popular in U.

Once upon a time marriage was proposed and a happily ever after soon followed. However, a backlog of legal immigration applications has given way to an easier way to legalize one’s status- fraudulent marriage.

In the last three years, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) found that 264,000 to 317,000 resident aliens obtained legal status through marriage.

According to CIS, “The other major finding from the table is that most of the spouses are not new arrivals at all; they are in the nation in some other status (legal or illegal) and so, in immigration-speak, they ‘adjust status’ here, rather than come through the ports of entry.”

In other words, it’s becoming more commonplace to obtain a visa through fraudulent marriages. Some of these marriages take place under shady circumstances. Former ICE agent John Sakelarides says many illegal aliens dupe an unsuspecting American citizen, and once the proverbial honeymoon is over, so is life as they knew it. “They often charge the U.S. citizen with abuse and/or battery knowing they will get their legal papers even sooner.”

A 2005 Government Accountability Office report on U.S. immigration practices found that approximately 20 percent of visa applications are filed under “marriage, spouse and family.” However, a bureaucratic United States Citizenship Immigration Services (USCIS) program doesn’t aggressively prosecute “benefit fraud.”

“Theoretically, they (illegal aliens) face up to five years in federal prison, and up to a $250,000.00 fine, or both. However, the real story? It’s hardly prosecuted. The why is the subject of the story; ‘It’s no big deal.’ Tell that to the US citizen who has been emotionally abused, falsely accused, and their life turned upside down,” said Sakelarides (See 8 USC 1325 ( c ).

Keeping this in mind, it is up to immigration officers to navigate the murky waters of potential marriage fraud. In the U.S., the waiting period to garner the coveted “green card” makes the most sense for those individuals seeking legality in the country. Experts contend that this program needs to be refined in order to root out the lawful marriages and those with more sinister motives.

The numbers below were provided through the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS)–David North.

Visas Created by Migrating Spouses and Fiancé(e)s, FYs 2008-2010

Spouses of U.S. citizens- 264,062/ FY08, 317,129/ FY09 and 271,909/ FY10.

Spouses of PRAs (2FA)- 35,608/ FY08, 26,622/ FY09, 20,635/ FY10.

Immigrant totals; 296,670/ FY08, 343,751/ FY09, 292,544/ FY10.

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

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Mexican soldiers seize large “pot-throwing” catapults from cartels

With the nation’s southern border facing more scrutiny than ever before, it was the Mexican military that found large catapults typically used to sling illicit drugs over the border fence near Douglas, Arizona.

A statement released yesterday by Mexican authorities indicated they followed an anonymous tip to a border city neighborhood. Military troops entered an Agua Prieta house and located one catapult in a truck and another in the residence.

A search of the home led to the Mexican soldiers seizing 1.4 tons of marijuana that was headed to U.S. cities. Earlier this year, law enforcement agents said they nabbed two other drug-like catapults.

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.
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Armas Cruzadas- DHS Sec. Napolitano’s own Mexican gun-trafficking operation

While Operation Fast and Furious remains a thorn in U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder’s side, it looks like Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano may soon begin sharing the pain.

Sec. Napolitano recently informed the House Judiciary Committee she had no knowledge of Fast and Furious, but omitted to mention her own department was running Operation Armas Cruzadas.

Operation Armas Cruzadas highlights another crucial factor – that the Mexican government had more of a role in the cartel arms trafficking business than just playing the victim.

This new information dovetails with complaints by Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) agents in the Phoenix office that complained Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents from Team VII regularly called “dibs” on gun trafficking cases in order to “get credit” for splashy narco-related investigations. One agent explained that the atmosphere seemed more focused on press conferences and ego rather than commonsense.

The DHS memorandum reveals that ICE ran Operation Armas Cruzadas with the full knowledge of Arturo Chávez Chávez,Mexican Attorney General in an effort to ostensibly prosecute cartels in Mexico using U.S. intelligence and agents. This is a departure from Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) Operation Fast and Furious where the Mexican government claimed it knew nothing about the gun-walking program.

The Mexican Attorney General agreed it was beneficial for both “…governments to work in a coordinated fashion to prevent, discourage and process arms traffickers,” the documents disclosed.

These documents demonstrate ICE remains more involved in the gun trafficking business than anybody knew or Sec. Napolitano was willing to admit to Congress.

However, Operation Armas Cruzadas doesn’t seem to include any input by ATF agents and this arms trafficking investigation has escaped scrutiny by the media. Perhaps, a bloated-bureaucratic DHS crossed its fingers hoping Operation Armas Cruzadas would not be discovered by the media?

Also, intelligence gathering in a post 9/11 world has accomplished a couple of things; first, it makes it easier for agencies to conduct investigations with little oversight under the guise of national security. And second, the infamous new age of electronic intelligence gathering provides law enforcement agencies with plausible deniability.

This is the first report concerning Operation Armas Cruzadas and a series of stories will provide more information on this gun-trafficking program in the coming days.

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

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Los Angeles to opt out of Secure Communities arrested illegals won’t be reported

The Los Angeles City Council voted 11-1 yesterday to support state legislation allowing the city to opt out of Department of Homeland Security’s “Secure Communities’” program that requires law enforcement officers to submit fingerprints of arrested people to immigration officials.

In an effort to crackdown on illegal immigration and comply with federal deportation orders, DHS created the program in 2008 in order to cross-check fingerprints of arrestees with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Former Los Angeles police chief, Bernard Parks who is now a LA City Councilman, introduced the motion supporting the state legislation. Parks said the program targeted illegal immigrants convicted of violent crimes but the federal law has gone astray from its original purpose.

“One of the most significant issues of ‘Secure Communities’ is that it impedes victims (from) making crime reports,” Parks said. “That is a 40-year journey in the city of Los Angeles for the LAPD … finding ways through language skills and also breaking down barriers to allow victims to come in, unimpeded to report crimes.”

Parks went on to say that anti-immigration activists will accuse the city of being a sanctuary city that harbors criminals, “but the large issue for me is that this is a home-rule issue. The city of Los Angeles should set policies as it regards how they conduct business with the community in which they serve.”

LAPD Assistant Chief Michel Moore explained that Los Angeles’ Special Order 40, which prevents police officers from considering immigration status when initiating a police action, has kept the city safe since it was established in 1979 under former LA Police Chief Daryl Gates.

“The perception alone undermines our ability to maintain and build upon trust with these (immigrant) communities, trust that’s vital to our ability to maintain the safety for those communities and all Angelenos,” Moore said.

Other states across the country have already suspended the enforcement of the ‘Secure Communities” program. Some of these states include New York, Massachusetts and Illinois.

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

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Clone Border Patrol vehicle

The drug cartels are stepping up their smuggling tactics by customizing vehicles to look just like Border Patrol trucks as a way to smuggle illicit drugs into America. This time the cloned vehicle was detected in Texas and it was loaded with more than 1,500 pounds of marijuana.

Just a few weeks ago a white van with a dozen illegals were arrested at a San Diego Border Patrol checkpoint for falsely impersonating U.S. Marines and using a boosted van with tampered license plates.

It was Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that observed a suspicious BP truck “conducting surveillance at the Del Rio, Texas Port of Entry (PoE),” according to court papers.

The driver of the “fake BP truck” was Felipe Esparza-Cruz, 28, and he is scheduled to appear in court on April 14.

The government case contends that Esparza-Cruz entered the “United States without inspection through the City of Del Rio southbound tollbooth lanes.”

Once the truck entered the country ICE Agents ordered “mobile surveillance in order to verify the authenticity of the vehicle.”

Esparza-Cruz allegedly imitated a process used by Border Patrol when they deport illegal aliens back to Mexico using Border Patrol trucks. Luckily ICE agents observed the BP truck and were able to make the arrest.

“They’d just drive through without presenting themselves for inspection because no one questioned a Border Patrol vehicle,” officials explained.

Like the U.S. Marine imposter van impounded in San Diego, the fake Border Patrol truck’s phony license plates did the drug trafficker in.

“Cloned vehicles, whether Border Patrol or some other frequently seen vehicle, are in my opinion, a serious threat,” says G. Alan Ferguson leader of the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers and author of the M3 Report.

He also explained that “for years since 9/11, there have been alerts for terrorists using cloned or stolen vehicles such as ambulances and other cloned vehicles add one more factor in realizing how vulnerable we are.”

While the borders may be more secure than years past, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has a long way to go when it comes to protecting the southern boundaries from human and drug smugglers. The increased border fence coupled with more Border Patrol Agents are now responsible for the Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTOs) to spend more money to get their products into America.

Despite the illegality of human a drug trafficking, these “cartel” businesses in Mexico earn billions of tax-free dollars per year and the Mexican government has yet to stop the cartel’s barbaric violence that has taken more than 35,000 lives in the past four years.

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

ACLU pressures California law enforcement to steer clear of illegal aliens

In an open letter to law enforcement leaders, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) asked sheriffs in California to cease harmful practices that target illegal alien communities.

The letter comes at a time when California is burdened with nearly $30 billion budget deficits and a new Rasmussen Poll that states 67 percent of Americans want states to tackle the illegal alien problem plaguing the country.

The ACLU contends apprehending illegal aliens costs local agencies money they no longer have to combat those residing in California unlawfully.

“Most law enforcement officers do not want to double as federal immigration agents. They know that it discourages witnesses and victims of crime from coming forward and ultimately harms public safety for everyone,” said report co-author and ACLU of Northern California (ACLU-NC) Staff Attorney Julia Harumi Mass. “We want to partner with law enforcement agencies and share what we have learned: that sheriffs and police chiefs across California can adopt practices that protect everyone and make wise use of taxpayer dollars.”

However the ACLU report and letter fail to acknowledge that a study by Federation for Immigration Reform (FAIR) illustrated California spends roughly $20 billion a year in services for illegal aliens in the Golden State.

Illegal immigration activists point out that if local, state and federal law enforcement did their job and enforced the nation’s immigration laws there would be more money for departments who are committed to keeping the peace.

The ACLU, however, sees things much differently.

“The federal government is not playing fair with local police and sheriffs. Most don’t want to engage in the dirty work of immigration enforcement or take on its steep costs,” report author Amalia Greenberg Delgado explained. “At a time of shrinking police departments’ staff and budgets, we hope California’s law enforcement leadership will review unnecessarily costly practices and rebuild trust with communities.”

The ACLU report went on to stipulate that “the legal framework for current police practices in immigrant communities – from vehicle checkpoints and impoundments to prolonged detention of immigrants in local jails, among others (was a harsh reality).” The report details the financial and human costs of these practices, including personal stories.

Rule of Law cities in California cite the safety issues that come along with those driving without drivers’ licenses or car insurance. The Escondido Police Department is one of those cities who perform various and random check points (of all residents) in an effort to curtail their unusually high number of car accidents. “It works,” says Escondido Police Chief Jim Maher.

Nevertheless, the ACLU believes that immigrant-rich communities think Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is lurking in the shadows at these drivers’ license check points. Maher says that’s not true.

“People fear that when the sheriff is called, ICE is not far behind. This is a huge problem especially in regards to domestic violence,” added Mass. “If victims are reluctant to call local police because they are afraid of becoming ensnared in the ICE web, then batterers enjoy impunity. That’s bad for everyone.”

To alleviate those fears, Chief Maher makes an effort to reach out to his community by attending community gatherings and explaining he is not calling ICE unnecessarily. “My department is trying to rid the city of criminals,” Maher said through an interpreter. “Don’t you want me to remove the rapists, child molesters and murders from your neighborhood?”

As the recession continues to linger, taxpayers are looking at the cold-hard facts that illegal immigration cost them money and are voicing their opinions through various polls like Rasmussen. The results are in- two out of three likely voters want the immigration laws enforced- period.

Read the ACLU Report Costs & Consequences – ACLU Special Report.pdf

Read the ACLU Cost-Saving Proposals ACLU Cost-Saving Proposals.pdf

Read the Rasmussen Poll – A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 67% of Likely U.S. Voters – two-out-of-three – think a state should have the right to enforce immigration laws if it believes the federal government is not enforcing them. Just 22% disagree and say states should not have that right. (To see survey question wording, click here).

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© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

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