emfizz.com December 14, 2017

Detentions spike, border arrests fall in Trump's first year

07 December 2017, 02:00 | Jan Cross

Illegal border crossing arrests in 2017 are at lowest levels in nearly 50 years

Illegal immigration, deportations down in last fiscal year

President Trump's inauguration - to the end of September, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement says officers made over 110,500 arrests of people already in the U.S. illegally.

"Overall removals are down because the border is under better control than it has been in 45 years", said Thomas Homan, the ICE deputy director, at a news conference.

Assaults on agents by undocumented immigrants have almost doubled, to a six-year high of 847 from 584 last year, while border arrests have declined 25 percent from last year's 415,816.

In fiscal year 2017, ICE arrested 143,470 people on immigration violations - the highest number of these type of arrests over the past three years.

Media captionWhere do America's undocumented immigrants live? The use of force with devices other than firearms has risen almost 30 percent, to 717 instances this year from 554 last year.

Customs and Border Protection defines "assault" as "a physically manifested attempt or threat to inflict injury on CBP personnel, whether successful or not, which causes a reasonable apprehension of imminent bodily harm".

She said that under the Trump administration, people in the immigrant community are disappearing silently and are being confronted by ICE in their most vulnerable places.

CBP Acting Deputy Commissioner Ronald Vitiello said that the agency was now studying prototypes for the wall Trump has ordered for the almost 2,000-mile (3,200 kilometer) border with Mexico.

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The amounts of fentanyl annually seized by US border and immigration authorities are almost three and five times the amounts previously taken, according to new federal data.

ICE said that deportations totalled 226,119, a decline of 6 per cent from the previous year, but that number masks a seismic shift away from the border.

CBP also said inspectors at land crossings, airports and seaports denied entry 216,370 times during the fiscal year, a decline of 24 percent from 2016.

There is a backlog that is being cleared out, including people that have received a final order or removal from an immigration judge, according to ICE officials.

Homan used the announcement to rail against so-called sanctuary cities - municipalities that in some way decline to cooperate with ICE - saying they entice more illegal immigration. At the same time, arrests along the Mexican border have fallen sharply, apparently as fewer people have tried to sneak into the U.S.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who headed the president's opioid commission, said last week at a hearing with legislators in Baltimore that worldwide drug trafficking problems regarding synthetic painkillers fentanyl and carfentanil need to be addressed before they become even worse in the U.S.

"I can speculate that it's just harder to cross the border and people are more resistant because of that", Vitiello said.

That apprehensions figure, which is seen as an indicator of how many people overall are getting into the United States illegally, fell from the previous year to the lowest level on record, the CBP said. "It's about removing that magnet".

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