GOODLATTE, GRASSLEY PRESS NAPOLITANO FOR ANSWERS ON RELEASE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS FROM DETENTION FACILITIES
WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte and Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) late yesterday questioned Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano using the current budget crisis as rationale to release possibly thousands of criminal illegal immigrants into the general population.
In a letter to Napolitano, Goodlatte and Grassley wrote, “The Department has decided to release criminal aliens into the population even though detention beds are below their average daily requirement of 34,000…While the Department released illegal alien detainees into the population on the basis of cost cutting, we find this decision particularly troubling because the Department has carried or will carry forward billions of dollars in fiscal years 2012 and 2013.”
Goodlatte and Grassley wrote that they “received information that ICE is ‘mass releasing’ aliens convicted of fraud, theft, or drunk driving offenses, as these aliens are not considered to be subject to mandatory detention. According to other reports, illegal aliens who are documented gang members and those who have been arrested for but not convicted of a serious crime are also being released. Additionally, it is reported that fugitives and aliens with final removal orders are also being released. According to information we have obtained, many of these aliens are being released on simple recognizance.”
Goodlatte and Grassley added, “Simply blaming budget reductions as a means to turn a blind eye toward the national security of the American people is a dangerous plan and one that calls into question the Department’s preparations for sequestration.”
The full text of the letter can be found here.