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Daly Mail
August 7, 2018

Prosecution of non-immigration crimes is down 57% at the southern U.S. border under Trump's zero-tolerance policy as immigration cases balloon, suggesting a shift in focus for law enforcement
By Valerie Bauman


The rate of non-immigration prosecutions at the southern U.S. border was down 57 percent in June compared to March as federal officials changed focus under the Trump administration's zero-tolerance immigration policy, according to a new report. In March 2018, non-immigration prosecutions accounted for one in seven (14 percent) of all total prosecutions at the southern border's five federal districts. That rate fell steadily over the next several months, and by June the ratio had fallen to one in seventeen (or six percent) of all prosecutions, according to an analysis of government data by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University. Unless crimes are suddenly less prevalent in the districts along the southwest border, the odds of being prosecuted for many federal offenses have declined,' the report found. The timing of the change coincides with the Trump administration's April 6 announcement that the government was taking a zero-tolerance approach to immigration at the southern U.S. border. Statisticians at TRAC concluded that the push to prioritize prosecuting illegal border crossers had taken focus away from other crimes that federal prosecutors are charged with enforcing including narcotics trafficking, weapons offenses and pollution crimes, among other things. 'There are these capacity issues; everything can't be your top priority,' said Susan Long, a statistician for TRAC. 'I think it's difficult to believe that the stepped-up immigration prosecutions were just happenstance and didn't have anything to do with policy.'


Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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