U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is the investigative branch of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and it is often a hindrance to individuals who are looking to immigrate into the United States. As the second largest investigative agency in the federal government, ICE plays a huge role in the approval and denial of immigration requests in New York and throughout the country.
A relatively new branch of the federal government, ICE was only established in 2003 during a merge of the Immigration and Naturalization Service with the investigative and interior enforcement elements of the U.S. Customs Service. With more than 20,000 employees, ICE has forces in every state of the U.S., including New York. Although the department’s mission is to promote homeland security while maintaining public safety, it often serves as a hindrance to immigrants who have already made their place in the U.S.
Under the watch of ICE are federal government programs that were designed to control our nation’s homeland security. These include border control, trade, customs, and most importantly, immigration. The intention behind ICE is to prevent terrorism through enhanced security; to protect borders through intelligent interior immigration enforcement; and to prevent illicit trade along the border. Unfortunately, although these priorities are well intentioned, they are not always executed as smoothly as they could be. In fact, ICE has created a number of issues for immigrants with a criminal status in the U.S.
After an immigrant is arrested, whether or not the criminal allegations are true, ICE can intervene. Immigrants in New York can be held in the government’s federal detention facility located in Buffalo. Here, detained immigrants will remain for an undetermined amount of time while ICE employees investigate the immigrant’s state of residency. Some immigrants are then released on bond, but others are kept detained.
Acting to protect our nation’s safety and wellbeing, employees of ICE regularly work to remove criminal aliens from the U.S. based on the belief that these individuals pose a threat to public safety. What the department often fails to take into consideration, however, are the discrepancies in our criminal justice system – discrepancies that can result in false accusations, wrongful arrests, and even avoidable convictions. Immigrants who are criminally accused under false pretenses are just as susceptible to deportation by ICE as are those immigrants that have been confirmed as criminals.
The Criminal Alien Program allows ICE professionals to fully direct and support any and all operations related to the identification and arrest of aliens who have been incarcerated in a federal, state, or local prison system. The efforts made by ICE officials also target at-large criminal aliens. The ICE’s responsibilities include investigating, arresting, and removing individuals from the U.S. through the utilization of an expedited process. This involves securing a final order of removal for an incarcerated alien before he or she will be released to ICE custody.
Unfortunately, expediting these processes can easily result in mistaken investigations, wrongful arrests, and worse (as mentioned above). For this reason, it is critical that you speak with a New York immigration lawyer from Pozo Goldstein, LLP as soon as possible. When we are involved in your case early on, we can take swift action to secure you the end results you’re looking for as you attend to any issued related to the ICE’s Criminal Alien Program.
If a member of your family has been detained by ICE, then you need to act quickly. Take the time now to contact a New York immigration attorney from our office to learn more about Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Not only can we provide you with thorough details regarding ICE and how it could affect the citizenship status of an immigrant who has been detained, but we can employ effective defense against deportation.
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