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Think Progress
April 9, 2014

Speeding Tickets, Minor Infractions, Account For At Least Half Of Deportations, Report Finds
By Esther Yu-Hsi Lee

A new Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) report out Tuesday found that since 2008, the most serious criminal charge for half of those deported was for an immigration or traffic violation. Former President George W. Bush (R) launched the federal Secure Communities program in 2008, in which local law enforcement agencies share fingerprint records with ICE. “There has been an absolute decline in the number of noncitizens removed who have been convicted of any crime apart from traffic and immigration,” the TRAC report stated. In fact, the “two large categories that ICE has classified as convicted criminals” were those with a traffic violation (up 191 percent) and individuals convicted of immigration offenses (up 167 percent). The report also found that in the 2013 fiscal year alone, half of all deportees were charged for an immigration or traffic violation. Only 12 percent of the total population had committed the most serious “Level 1″ offense. Illegal entry, considered a petty misdemeanor, was the most serious offense for about 23 percent of immigrants charged with a conviction. And between 2008 and 2013, the number of deportees convicted for vehicle theft was down 27 percent and robbery, burglary, and forgery was up four to six percent.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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