ICE Targeting MS13, More Enforcement Actions, Arrests Expected

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By Joe Guzzardi

Joe is a CAPS Senior Writing Fellow whose commentaries about California's social issues have run in newspapers throughout California and the country for nearly 30 years. Contact Joe at joeguzzardi@capsweb.org, or find him on Twitter @joeguzzardi19.

The writer's views are his own.

July 26, 2017
Get MS-13, other dangerous gangs out of California.
The Trump administration has promised to crack down on dangerous criminal gangs, most of which operate within the nation’s sanctuary cities.

According to a July internal Immigration and Enforcement memo Reuters obtained, the agency will intensify its focus on known teenage gang members that unlawfully entered the United States as unaccompanied minors.

ICE said that it will identify gang members either by their tattoos, their apparel or their hangouts. The agency’s primary target is MS-13, the Salvadoran-based gang that’s worked its way from Los Angeles to the Northeast. Shortly after four men’s bodies were found murdered in Long Island, a New York Post headline declared that ‘This is the most dangerous gang in the nation.’ Since 2016, MS-13 has killed 15 in Suffolk County, New York.

After the four Long Island killings, Attorney General Jeff Sessions told assembled local police chiefs and sheriffs that “Our motto is justice for victims and consequences for criminals. That’s how simple it is. Prosecute them, and after they’ve been convicted, if they’re not here lawfully, they’re going to be deported.”

But in May, even before the latest ICE directive, enforcement officers worked with the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives to carry out 50 pre-dawn raids in sanctuary city Los Angeles, the base for MS-13’s U.S. operations. Immigration officers arrested about 44, mostly illegal aliens.

Stepped up enforcement in sanctuary cities is overdue. The California Assembly is deliberating a bill, SB 54, which would make the entire state a sanctuary for criminal aliens and other immigration offenders.

Take action now to block SB 54. Go to the CAPS Action Alert page here to tell your Assemblyman to reject SB 54, and make the state a sanctuary for its citizens and legal permanent residents. Watch the CAPS TV ad here, and read the accompanying press release here.

Californians and non-Californians can also sign a petition here that will be delivered to the Senate and urge it to pass HR 3003, the “No Sanctuary for Criminals Act” that the House approved earlier this summer. 
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