New Department of Justice data shows that more than 90 percent of foreign-born prisoners held in the U.S. are illegal immigrants.
The data shows that about 24 percent of the federal prison population are foreign born, 45,493. Of those, just 3,939 are U.S. citizens, and the remaining 41,554 are illegally in the United States.
The department released the data on Tuesday as part of a requirement under President Trump's executive order on public safety signed in February.
"Illegal aliens who commit additional crimes in the United States are a threat to public safety and a burden on our criminal justice system," said Attorney General Jeff Sessions. "This is why we must secure our borders through a wall and effective law enforcement, and we must strengthen cooperation between federal, state and local governments as we strive to fulfill our sacred duty of protecting and serving the American people."
The data also shows that 54 percent of the illegal immigrants identified have received final deportation orders, and another 33 percent are under investigation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement for possible deportation.
Just 26 are illegal immigrants who have been granted asylum relief in the U.S.
The Departments of Justice and Homeland Security do not have a program collecting data on the immigration status of inmates in state and local prisons. They are currently in the process of establishing such a program through the Office of Justice Programs, the department said.