Report: Arrests of Illegal Aliens in U.S. Drop to Lowest Level in over a Decade

ICE Agents in Southern California
ICE

The number of arrests of illegal aliens living across the United States has dropped to the lowest level in over a decade in Fiscal Year 2021, according to data published in the Washington Post.

Thanks to President Joe Biden’s so-called “sanctuary country” orders, which prevent Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents from arresting and deporting most illegal aliens, the number of arrests of illegal aliens from October 1, 2020, to September 30, 2021, has dramatically fallen.

The Post reports:

Immigration arrests in the interior of the United States fell in fiscal 2021 to the lowest level in more than a decade — roughly half the annual totals recorded during the Trump administration, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement data obtained by The Washington Post. [Emphasis added]

Officers working for ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) made about 72,000 administrative arrests during the fiscal year that ended in September, down from 104,000 during the 2020 fiscal year and an average of 148,000 annually from 2017 through 2019. [Emphasis added]

During the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, ERO’s 6,000 enforcement officers each averaged about 12 immigration arrests per year, or one per month. The peak of ICE enforcement activity during the past decade was fiscal 2011, when ICE made 322,093 administrative arrests, about 4.5 times the 2021 total, historical data show. [Emphasis added]

Though Biden claimed that, unlike President Donald Trump, he would focus immigration enforcement on criminal illegal aliens, the arrest data shows that Trump actually focused more on nabbing criminal illegal aliens.

In Fiscal Year 2021, the Post reports, 65 percent of illegal aliens arrested by ICE agents were convicted criminals or had pending criminal charges. In Fiscal Year 2020, when Trump was president, criminal illegal aliens made up about 9-in-10 ICE arrests.

Still, ICE officials pointed to their arrest of more than 6,000 illegal aliens with aggravated felony convictions from February 18 to August 31 as justification for Biden’s “sanctuary country” orders.

Former Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Chad Wolf called the arrest numbers a “disaster in the middle of a crisis.”

Those orders, currently being challenged in federal court, were instituted in February and ordered that ICE agents must not arrest or deport illegal aliens unless they had been recently convicted of an aggravated felony or had been identified as a known gang member or terrorist.

Last month, Biden’s officials issued new “sanctuary country” orders that effectively instruct ICE agents not to arrest or deport illegal aliens unless they pose a “current threat to public safety.” The orders require ICE agents to factor in a number of reasons as to why a criminal illegal alien should not be arrested and deported.

“The overriding question is whether the noncitizen poses a current threat to public safety,” the orders, which will take effect November 29, state.

The drastic reduction to interior immigration enforcement comes as Biden balloons the nation’s illegal alien population by eliminating a number of border controls and imposing an expansive Catch and Release policy. In Fiscal Year 2021, for instance, more than two million illegal aliens crossed the U.S.-Mexico border — the highest level of annual illegal immigration in American history.

Booming illegal immigration is providing an endless flow of cheap, foreign labor for businesses. In just two months, from August to October, Biden’s officials provided nearly 32,000 border crossers with work permits so they could take jobs in the U.S.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at jbinder@breitbart.com. Follow him on Twitter here.

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