ICE Nabs Illegal Immigrant Charged With Assaulting Cop, Shoplifting Spree In Sanctuary NYC

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Jason Hopkins Immigration Reporter
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Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) apprehended the last member of a group of illegal immigrants allegedly involved in a Manhattan shopping spree and beatdown of a New York police officer.

Deportation officers apprehended Brayan Freites-Macias, a 21-year-old Venezuelan illegal immigrant, in New York City on Wednesday, the agency announced in a press release. The agency is also faulting New York City authorities for repeatedly refusing to honor their detainer requests on Freitas-Macias when he was being held in local detention, choosing instead to release him back into the community.

“Brayan Freites-Macias has displayed a history of violence and represented a threat to the residents of New York City,” Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) New York City Field Office Director Kenneth Genalo stated in the press release. “Any time local jurisdictions refuse to honor ICE detainers, they put the public at risk.” (RELATED: Local Authorities Ignored Detainer, Released Illegal Alien Convicted Of Sex Crimes Against A Child, ICE Says)

Freitas-Macias was arrested by Border Patrol agents in December 2023 after illegally entering the country. He was served with a notice to appear before an immigration judge and then released into the U.S., according to ICE.

In the months leading up to the shoplifting incident, New York Police Department (NYPD) officers had arrested the man on a number of unrelated charges, including petty larceny and criminal trespass.

Freitas-Macias allegedly worked with a group of four other Venezuelan migrants on April 2 to steal merchandise at a Manhattan Target. The migrants allegedly stole a backpack and then maneuvered aisle to aisle stuffing it with items, according to the New York Post. When officers attempted to stop the shoplifting, they resisted arrest and fought back, resulting in one officer being taken to a hospital.

NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 5: Pedestrians cross an intersection near concrete barriers, June 5, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Several days later, ICE announced that they were able to nab all but one of the five-member crew: Freitas-Macias. He was the only one of the suspects ordered held on bail following his shoplifting arrest.

ICE lodged a detainer for Freitas-Macias with the New York City Department of Corrections on April 9, but officials refused to honor the detainer and released him on Monday. He was arrested again by NYPD officers on grand larceny charges that same day. ICE lodged a detainer request with New York officials again, but that detainer was ignored and he was released from local custody.

Deportation officers were finally able to apprehend him near his residence in New York City on Wednesday, where he will remain in ICE custody.

The arrest comes as local officials continue to deal with the massive financial and logistical burden the immigration crisis has brought to the city.

Over 150,000 migrants have flooded New York City in under two years, with tens of thousands living in emergency shelters, tents, or on the sidewalk. Mayor Eric Adams ultimately had to enforce a curfew on some of the migrant shelters amid complaints of panhandling by the migrants. Residents say their quality of life has diminished in the wake of the crisis.

Adams has since expressed a desire to rollback some of the city’s sanctuary policies to help mitigate the crisis.

The NYPD did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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