Operation “Cross Check” was performed earlier this month by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, making national headlines. The operation was composed of myriad raids across the nation, eventually detaining more than 3,100 illegal immigrants who could face deportation. “Cross Check” hit close to home as well, with 206 people arrested in Los Angeles, California.
What federal officials will do now that the “Cross Check” sweeps are complete is look into the criminal backgrounds of those arrested. As has been reported, ICE’s new directives are to focus on deportation cases involving illegal immigrants who have committed serious crimes. Of the 206 illegal immigrants in Los Angeles, 106 of them have committed “serious” crimes.
Those crimes seem to be loosely defined — they could be violent crimes, they could be trying to re-enter the country illegally. There is also the possibility that some of the 106 did not commit serious crimes and were lumped in with that group because of some minor criminal history. No matter the situation, each case will be reviewed and officials will determine if the person should enter deportation hearings.
But what happens to the 100 immigrants who were scooped up during “Cross Check?” Under the new mandate given to ICE it would seem these people have displayed good moral character previously, having no criminal background, and should be let go. In regards to arresting illegal immigrants with no criminal history, an immigration activist in Los Angeles said “if ICE is going to offer prosecutorial discretion, we don’t understand why they bother.”
Source: Huffington Post, “Los Angeles Deportation Sweep Nets 206 Undocumented immigrants,” Simone Wilson, April 2, 2012