ICE accuses NY prison officials of not cooperating with immigration enforcement

Posted: Updated:

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has issued four subpoenas to the Department of Corrections, accusing prison officials in New York of not cooperating with immigration enforcement. 

It’s causing controversy because New York City is a sanctuary city, and ICE is looking to deport certain illegal immigrants accused of committing severe crimes.

ICE says issuing the subpoenas was necessary because Corrections continues to ignore its requests for information.

The agency says that in the past it hasn’t been needed because most law enforcement agencies across the country willingly provide ICE with information on illegal immigrants arrested for crimes.

There are four particular individuals in New York City that ICE is looking for information on. The most recent is a 21-year-old Guyanese national Reeaz Khan, who was arrested earlier this month by the NYPD. He’s charged with murder and sexually abusing 92-year-old Maria Fuertes in Queens. He was arrested back in November for a different crime.

Acting ICE Director Matthew Albence says he has a message for New York City and other sanctuary cities in the U.S.

"Please let ICE help you, let ICE keep your communities safe. We can actually prevent crimes such as these brutal sexual offenses and murders like we saw here this week. These policies here and elsewhere in the country make us less safe, which is the opposite of what the primary goal of every law enforcement officer and law enforcement agency and every elected official should be,” he says.

The New York Immigration Coalition, an immigrant advocate organization, is saying the Trump administration is politicizing the death of 92-year-old Fuertes at the expense of thousands of New Yorkers who they say should not be handed over to ICE before being convicted of a crime.

It released a statement saying in part, “This is just one more blatant attempt to divide our city and foment fear and hatred of our immigrant neighbors. New York’s policies are what define us as a city committed to due process, safety and opportunity for all."

If the subpoenas are ignored, ICE says an immigration officer may coordinate with the U.S. Attorney's Office to get an order from the U.S. District Court.



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