State court officials are panicking about federal enforcement agents arresting illegal aliens at courthouses, but a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) official said Tuesday that merely being present at a courthouse won’t save an illegal from deportation.
“Just because they’re a victim in a certain case does not mean there’s not something in their background that could cause them to be a removable alien,’” DHS spokesman David Lapan said, according to The Washington Post. “Just because they’re a witness doesn’t mean they might not pose a security threat for other reasons.”
“I can’t give a blanket statement that says every witness and victim is somehow untouchable, because they may have circumstances in their own case that would make them again subject to arrest,” he added, saying that cause of arrest “could be any number of things — again, the categories that we’ve talked about that make them subject to arrest or potential removal still apply to somebody who might him or herself be a victim.’”
Although in March California Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye bitterly complained about the practice, DHS Secretary John F. Kelly and Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in response that the courthouse is actually one of the best places to arrest illegals, as they’ve usually been scanned for possession of weapons before they’re allowed entrance into most areas of courthouses.
Unfortunately, Kelly and Sessions noted, there’s been a clash with local jurisdictions blocking Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents from entering prisons to arrest illegals, which then forces agents to shift to courthouses, instead.
In February, an ICE agent arrested a transgender illegal at a courthouse in El Paso, Texas, who was in court trying to seek a protective order against an ex-boyfriend.
“I did not think this situation would be possible,” Irvin Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez has already served time in prison on larceny and assault, in addition to being deported numerous times in the past.
In prison, Gonzalez was denied access to hormones, meaning that he was starting to grow facial hair again.
The ability of ICE and other border enforcement agents to carry out their jobs without the strictures placed upon them by the Obama administration has resulted in a surge of morale.
“For the first time in my nineteen years, I feel like I can do the job I was hired to do, the job they tell you you’ll be doing when you leave the academy,” a border patrol agent from San Diego, California, told The New York Times in February.
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