Deportations have declined significantly in the first five months of this fiscal year compared to years past, according to data from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
The rate of deportations from October to March was down 43 percent from what it was three years before, as the Obama administration has altered its enforcement priorities to target illegal immigrants who it says have committed serious crimes.
The ICE data, obtained by the Sun Sentinel, shows a steep decline in overall deportations from the past three years compared to the most recent five months with a massive drop in the rate.
In FY 2012 nationwide 409,849 people were deported from the U.S. at a rate of 1,213 a day. In FY 2013 that number dropped slightly to 368,644 people at a rate per day of 1,010. By FY 2014, 315,943 people were deported at a rate of 866.
Compare the past three fiscal years to the first five months of this fiscal year and the picture is one of diminished enforcement. From October 1 to March 7 nationwide 101,201 people were deported at a rate of 640 a day.
The news comes as Judicial Watch released internal DHS documents revealing that as of April 26, 2014, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had released 165,900 convicted criminal aliens convicted of serious crime such as homicide, sexual assault, kidnapping, and aggravated assault.
And while the level and rate of deportations have significantly declined due to the Obama administration’s changes to enforcement policies, the Sun Sentinel reports that immigration advocates remain frustrated that they see certain deportations continuing.
Such activists also are expressing concern that illegal immigrants who may be eligible for Obama’s executive amnesty — in which millions of illegal immigrants will be granted legal status and work permits — could also be deported.
The Obama administration’s executive amnesty — the expansion of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) — were recently blocked by a federal judge. The Obama administration is appealing the decision.