Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano and U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton announced
record-breaking immigration enforcement statistics achieved under the Obama
administration—including unprecedented numbers of convicted criminal
alien removals and overall alien removals in fiscal year 2010.
"This administration has focused on enforcing our immigration laws in
a smart, effective manner that prioritizes public safety and national security
and holds employers accountable who knowingly and repeatedly break the law," said
Secretary Napolitano. "Our approach has yielded historic results, removing
more convicted criminal aliens than ever before and issuing more financial
sanctions on employers who knowingly and repeatedly violate immigration laws
than during the entire previous administration."
"ICE is committed to tough law enforcement that protects the safety and
security of the American people," said ICE Director John Morton. "These
record-setting numbers are the result of strong, sensible enforcement programs
and priorities, and the dedication of thousands of ICE agents and officers
who work tirelessly every day to keep our communities safe."
In fiscal year 2010, ICE set a record for overall removals of illegal aliens,
with more than 392,000 removals nationwide. Half of those removed—more
than 195,000—were convicted criminals. The fiscal year 2010 statistics
represent increases of more than 23,000 removals overall and 81,000 criminal
removals compared to fiscal year 2008—a more than 70 percent increase
in removal of criminal aliens from the previous administration.
DHS has also expanded the Secure Communities initiative—which uses biometric
information and services to identify and remove criminal aliens in state prisons
and local jails—from 14 jurisdictions in 2008 to more than 660 today,
including all jurisdictions along the Southwest border. DHS is on track to
expand this program to all law enforcement jurisdictions nationwide by 2013.
This year alone, Secure Communities has resulted in the arrest of more than
59,000 convicted criminal aliens, including more than 21,000 convicted of major
violent offenses like murder, rape, and the sexual abuse of children.
Since January 2009, ICE has audited more than 3,200 employers suspected of
hiring illegal labor, debarred 225 companies and individuals, and imposed approximately $50 million in financial sanctions—more than the total amount of audits and debarments than during the entire previous administration.