National Security

Local Authorities Ignored Detainer, Released Illegal Alien Convicted Of Sex Crimes Against A Child, ICE Says

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Jason Hopkins Immigration Reporter
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Connecticut law enforcement officials released an illegal alien convicted of sex crimes against a minor while ignoring a detainer request, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

ICE agents apprehended a 27-year-old Ecuadorian national convicted of indecent assault and second degree assault of a Connecticut child earlier this month, the agency announced in a press release on Wednesday. The agency is faulting local officials for releasing the alien, despite an immigration detainer placed on him.

“This convicted sex offender presented a significant threat to the children of our Connecticut communities,” ERO Boston Field Office Director Todd M. Lyons stated. “This individual should never have been released back on the streets. Thanks to the hard work of our officers in Hartford, he was removed from the community and no longer poses a threat to our residents.”

Border Patrol apprehended the Ecuadorian national, who remained unidentified in the press release, in May 2015 after he was seen illegally entering the U.S. through the Texas border. A Department of Justice immigration judge released him from custody in August 2015 with an order of recognizance on a surety bond.

Danbury, Connecticut, police officers arrested the man on March 13, 2020, on second-degree assault and assault with risk of injury to a child, which is a sex crime under Connecticut state law. ICE says its Boston field office lodged an immigration detainer request with the Connecticut Department of Corrections three days later. (RELATED: Mexican Officials Keep Meddling In Red States’ Efforts To Crack Down On Illegal Immigration)

The Connecticut Superior Court in Danbury convicted him of the charges on April 13, 2021. The court originally sentenced him to five years in state prison, but that sentence was reduced to five years of probation and he was subsequently released, according to ICE.

The agency says the illegal alien was released without their office being notified, despite the existence of an active detainer on him.

In May 2023, the man was, again, arrested by Danbury police — this time for assault in the third degree and violation of probation. Again, ICE lodged a detainer seeking custody of him with the Connecticut Department of Corrections. The Connecticut Superior Court convicted him of the charges, sentencing him to three years of probation, where he was then released back into the community without any notification to federal immigration authorities, according to ICE.

GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA – MAY 29: An ICE agent with U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), watches as Guatemalan police investigate the scene after detaining a suspected human trafficker on May 29, 2019 in Guatemala City. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

Deportation officers were able to apprehend the illegal alien in Hartford, Connecticut, on April 17. The agency said he will remain in their custody pending a later hearing from an immigration judge.

The apprehension was the latest in ICE’s ongoing drive to apprehend and deport criminal illegal aliens, despite a lack of cooperation from numerous state and jurisdictions across the country. The agency has taken particular umbrage with New England communities as of late, having called out local authorities in Massachusetts and Connecticut in the past few days for their refusal to honor immigration detainer requests.

Detainer requests are lodged by the agency when a suspected illegal alien is placed into custody at a local or state detention facility. These detainers ask authorities to notify ICE in advance if they plan on releasing the alien, and also ask that they maintain custody long enough to allow ICE agents time to make an apprehension.

However, many sanctuary cities and other jurisdictions hostile to ICE’s mission have policies in place that strictly prohibit local law enforcement from cooperating with ICE agents, which would include honoring an immigration detainer request. This forces deportation officers to make apprehensions out in the community —something they argue is more dangerous for everyone.

“Detainers increase the safety of all parties involved — ERO personnel, law enforcement officials, removable noncitizens and the public — by allowing an arrest to be made in a secure and controlled custodial setting as opposed to at-large within the community,” the press release said.

In the face of an unprecedented illegal immigration crisis, federal authorities have pushed on in their efforts to enforce immigration law. A recent study published by Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse found that roughly half a million migrants were deported by ICE and Border Patrol agents in just the past six months, and another 137,000 migrants were ordered deported by immigration judges during that same time period.

The Connecticut Department of Corrections did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.

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