Kelly Ordered ICE to Portray Immigrants as Criminals to Justify Raids

Kelly Ordered ICE to Portray Immigrants as Criminals to Justify Raids

Multiple email exchanges between Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials earlier this year have revealed that former Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly instructed immigration officials to portray immigrants swept up in mass raids as criminals. Kelly evidently designed this directive to justify the countless immigration raids that began taking place starting in February 2017. Students at Vanderbilt University Law School obtained the emails through a Freedom of Information Act request. According to the emails, Kelly wanted to highlight the apprehension of three immigrants who were violent criminals. The goal was to prove to the public that the administration’s mass raids were necessary for public safety. This is despite the fact that the raids actually swept up hundreds of immigrants who had no criminal history at all. The emails were remarkably detailed about spinning the mass deportation raids to the public. In fact, one email instructed the agency’s chiefs of staff nationwide that if one location didn’t have three overly egregious cases, then they should include a case from another location. Agency officials were to put the three selected cases in a white paper for distribution to media outlets. In doing so, officials hoped to swing public opinion in the agency’s favor as to the mass immigration raids that were beginning to take place. When questioned about the emails, however, the White House and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had no comment. In the state of Texas, at least, Kelly’s directives largely failed. The attempts of field offices to show undocumented immigrants detained in raids as hardened criminals just didn’t work. The failures were largely due to the fact that most of the detained immigrants were not criminals at all. When you or a loved one are detained and face deportation for any reason, Landerholm Immigration, A.P.C. is here to help. We care about you, your family, and your ability to remain in the U.S. As a result, our California deportation defense lawyers stand ready to build the strongest possible deportation defense case on your behalf. Contact your Oakland immigration lawyer today and learn how we can advocate for you and your family in your deportation proceedings.
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