DHS: Almost A Quarter Of Federal Prisoners Are Immigrants

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Will Racke Immigration and Foreign Policy Reporter
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The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released its latest report on incarcerated aliens Tuesday, showing nearly a quarter of all federal prisoners are immigrants.

Of the 187,855 inmates in Bureau of Prisons’ (BOP) custody, 42,034 — or 22 percent — are foreign-born aliens, according to DHS figures.

The foreign-born share of the overall U.S. population is estimated at 13.5 percent.

About 45 percent of the incarcerated aliens have been issued final orders of removal, and 3 percent have cases pending adjudication before an immigration judge. Nearly all of the rest are under investigation by immigration authorities for possible deportation.

The DHS report, a joint effort by BOP and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, is required under President Donald Trump’s January executive order on public safety. The previous iteration, released May 2, showed 41,544 aliens in the federal prison system. (RELATED: DOJ: More Than Half Of Non-Citizen Prison Inmates Could Be Deported)

In addition to the BOP prisoners, the U.S. Marshals Service maintains custody of 12,000 “self-reporting” foreign-born prisoners in pre-trial detention, about 24 percent of the total number in USMS custody. More then 80 percent those aliens have final orders of removal, according to the DHS report.

DHS says it “continues to progress” toward collecting data on the immigrant population is state and local jails, which do not keep uniform records about the immigration status of prisoners.

The average annual cost of incarcerating a single federal prisoner is about $32,000, according to a BOP report.

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