About two-thirds of all undocumented immigrants recently arrested by ICE had no criminal convictions
President Trump's administration pledged to focus Immigration and Customs Enforcement efforts on unauthorized immigrants with criminal records, but ICE is increasingly arresting people with no criminal convictions, data released by the agency Thursday showed.
About two-thirds of the nearly 80,000 immigrants arrested by ICE agents between October 2017 and March 2018 had no criminal convictions, HuffPost reported. The number of arrests has ticked up, but deportations decreased slightly.
During the same time period the year before, ICE arrested about 63,000 undocumented immigrants, 21 percent of whom didn't have criminal conviction records. The year before that, when the agency was still led by the Obama administration, about 54,000 people were arrested, 13 percent of whom had no criminal convictions.
HuffPost notes that while Trump has promised to focus only on "criminal aliens," he has given ICE agents more leeway to make arrests on any undocumented immigrant. Undocumented immigrants do not automatically have criminal records, because entering the country without authorization is a civil violation, not a criminal one. Regardless, ICE officials report that the agency has expanded its scope. "If somebody has violated our immigration laws, they are priorities now," an ICE official said. Read more at HuffPost.