As promised, immigration police have expanded their campaign to deport illegals with criminal records, announcing the seizure of 368 illegals in seven states and Washington, D.C.
That nearly a 250 percent increase over the 106 announced a week earlier.
The biggest seizures by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents were in Texas, but they made arrests as far north as Wyoming.
What's more, they targeted members of the violent MS-13 gang and illegals charged with sex crimes against kids.
In one five-day campaign around Virginia and Washington, 82 illegals from 26 countries were arrested. ICE described them this way:
Of the 82 individuals arrested, 68 had previous criminal convictions for crimes like armed robbery, larceny and drug distribution. Of the remaining 14, two had ties to the MS-13 street gang; two had outstanding final orders of removal; three had overstayed their visas; one was wanted by a foreign law enforcement entity; one was a verified human rights violator and two had pending local charges. The remainder had unlawfully entered the United States in violation of U.S. immigration laws.
After arresting 158 in Texas, Daniel Bible, field office director for Enforcement and Removal Operations in San Antonio, said, "ICE's primary immigration enforcement efforts target convicted criminal aliens. Consequently, our operations improve overall public safety by removing these criminals from our streets, and ultimately from our country."
The Trump adminstration has been signaling that it plans to arrest more criminal illegals and deport them. The threats and action seem to have curbed the flow of illegal immigration across the border.
Next week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a longtime advocate of tougher immigration laws, plans to visit the border.
This week's list of arrests and links to the reports are below:
— 26 arrested in Colorado and Wyoming.
— 82 arrested in Virginia and Washington, D.C.
— 31 arrested in New York City.
— 75 arrested in Texas and Oklahoma.
— 153 arrested in Texas.
— 1 arrested in New Jersey.
"As a nation, we must protect the integrity of our immigration system and the removal of illegal aliens, especially those with a criminal history-this is one of ICE's top priorities," said John Tsoukaris, ERO Newark Field Office Director in a statement. "ICE shares the county's ultimate objective to protect public safety and national security while simultaneously preserving the critical community-police bond. As such, county jails that fail to work with ICE put their communities at risk."
Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org