BANGOR, Maine — As part of its ongoing efforts to remove criminal aliens, immigration fugitives and egregious immigration law violators, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement conducted a four-day operation in New England that resulted in 81 arrests, the agency said Friday in a news release.
The operation, which wrapped up Wednesday, was conducted by ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations Boston Field Office.
All those arrested either were previously removed, ordered removed and failed to comply or had prior convictions for crimes that include possession of a firearm, assault, domestic violence assault, battery, breaking and entering, drug trafficking and possession, larceny, enticing a minor, restraining order violations, identity fraud, resisting arrest and robbery.
Among the people arrested was a citizen and national of the Dominican Republic, who had been convicted of two counts of possession of a firearm, assault and battery, threatening, assault, receiving stolen property and disorderly conduct in Massachusetts, federal officials said. The man was ordered removed in 2010 but failed to depart. He was arrested Monday and is in ICE custody pending removal.
On Wednesday, ERO Boston Fugitive Operations Team members located and arrested a citizen and national of Nigeria, who had been convicted of enticing a minor in Connecticut. The man originally entered the United States in 2002 as a nonimmigrant visitor and never left. He remains in ICE custody.
The names of the two suspects were not released.
“The arrest and removal of criminal aliens has a direct and tangible impact on public safety in communities in New England,” said Sean Gallagher, field office director for ERO Boston, which covers New England. “Our continued focus on targeting criminal aliens and egregious immigration violators also ensures the very best use of limited agency resources.”
During fiscal year 2013, ICE conducted 368,644 removals nationwide. Eighty-two percent of individuals removed from the interior of the United States previously had been convicted of a criminal offense. Ninety eight percent of all removals met one or more of the agency’s civil immigration enforcement priorities.
ICE targets serious criminal aliens who present the greatest risk to the security of the nation’s communities, such as those charged with or convicted of homicide, rape, robbery, kidnapping, major drug offenses and threats to national security.
The agency also prioritizes the arrest and removal of those who game the immigration system, including immigration fugitives and criminal aliens who previously have been deported and illegally re-entered the country.