An ICE Enforcement and Removal officer revealed to Breitbart Texas a recent email disseminating instructions to censor reports when listing particular facts involving the incarceration of criminal aliens.
The email tells officers to redact information prior to submission to Immigration Courts or the public as part of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The source, who wished to remain anonymous, believes the instructions are designed to hide the full truth when criminal aliens are released instead of deported and then commit subsequent crimes.
Part of the email from the Acting Assistant Director of ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations reads (emphasis original):
As information related to enforcement priority determinations may not be final at the time a case is processed and may further develop over time, please do not include this information in the I-213 narrative. When this information is included in the I-213 please be aware of the need to redact that information when it is filed with EOIR/Immigration Judges or turned over in FOIA requests.
The request to remove information from an arrest report is unprecedented. The arrest report is a historical document that allows the officer to record circumstances of an arrest and the detention of the arrestee. Any attempts to dissuade an officer from documenting all facts at the time of an arrest, such as policy impacts on decision making at the time, place the officer in legal jeopardy at a later date if asked to testify why a decision or conclusion is reached.
As a hypothetical, an ICE officer takes a person into custody after he is released from jail on a criminal offense, but does not meet the Biden Administration’s policy threshold for deportation. Rather than document the release on the arrest report as a matter of policy, the report goes silent on the matter. Time passes, and the criminal alien re-offends. The prior arrest record will not show that the ICE officer was simply following orders to release and instead has to defend himself as if it were his poor judgment triggering the unfortunate chain of events. ICE management and the Biden Administration by extension have plausible denial.
The source says he has never been instructed to withhold decision information in an arrest report until now. He worried that individual officers will face professional consequences when criminal aliens violate laws after they are released.
The enforcement and removal policy disseminated by Acting ICE Director Tae Johnson limits an officer’s ability to arrest and remove a criminal without a supervisor’s written approval—creating a significant administrative burden for an officer who typical deported criminal aliens straight from local jails under previous administrations.
The policy has reduced the number of arrests and removals conducted by ICE. According to ICE statistics, less than a third arrested by ICE last year would qualify for arrest and removal under the Biden Administration’s policy.
Randy Clark is a 32-year veteran of the United States Border Patrol. Prior to his retirement, he served as the Division Chief for Law Enforcement Operations, directing operations for nine Border Patrol Stations within the Del Rio, Texas Sector.