33 arrested in Seattle in immigration sweep focused on "sanctuary" cities

Image Immigration detainees arrested by ICE

Operation "Safe City" focused on sanctuary cities, which are cities and regions where ICE deportation officers are denied access to jails and prisons to interview suspected immigration violators or jurisdictions where ICE detainers are not honored. That stance has aggravated officials with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, known as ICE, who want local jurisdictions to detain undocumented immigrants when they are discovered. After he was placed under arrest, a search of his person revealed a loaded handgun in his pocket. 9, ICE had made 43% more arrests year-over-year, reports the Washington Post. In all, 498 people were arrested nationwide, according to ICE.

Among those arrested in Los Angeles, the agency said, was a Mexican gang member who entered the United States illegally.

The apprehensions were similar to other past roundups by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, but this time focused on placed Justice Department officials charged were soft on illegal immigration, the Los Angeles Times reported. After he was arrested, agents found a loaded handgun in his pocket.

ICE spokesman James Schwab announced the results of the sweep Thursday, and he said that Dreamers or those with active status in the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program were not targeted.

She did not have a specific breakdown for the 11 arrests in Montgomery County.

Critics of Trump's immigration policies spoke out against the operation. In San Jose, one of the arrestees was a Mexican citizen who came to the US on a visa and overstayed by more than a decade, officials said. At an event outside the State House - he urged the Senate to pass a bill that he filed that would allow local law enforcement to work with the federal officials in cases where immigrants have been convicted of a violent crime.

The Trump administration has tried to withhold federal money to sanctuary cities, only to face several challenges in court.

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has continuously warned #sanctuary cities that they faced the risk of missing out on millions in federal funding if they continued with their policies of giving illegal immigrants a safe haven.

Some have passed local laws limiting compliance with federal immigration laws or shielding some immigrants facing deportation.

Over 300 of the people arrested this week had criminal convictions, ICE said, according to NBC.

ICE has since updated its original news release.

ICE declined to identify the local detainees by name, but the agency offered a description of one.

President Donald Trump is on track to deport fewer illegal immigrants this year than were expelled from the country at the same point last year under the Obama administration, government documents show. That's despite ICE claiming in its release that most of its 498 arrests netted "convicted criminals".

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