DHS: Gang members freed through 'sanctuary' policies

gang arrest

Sanctuary policies have resulted in violent illegal alien gang members being released into American cities, according to data from the Department of Homeland Security. A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) analyzes the data showing a total of 142 gang members were released nationwide between October 2016 and June 2017 by jurisdictions that refused to honor detainer requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The vast majority of those releases, 89, were in California. Texas had 11 such releases.

"Because of sanctuary policies, a lot of these guys ended up being released because jails in the sanctuary cities refused to turn them over to ICE," says Preston Huennekens, CIS research assistant. "So they're just out on the streets now."

In particular, the report says 15 of those released by sanctuary jurisdictions were suspected members of the violent Central American gang MS-13. "Some gangs like MS-13 are just predominantly occupied with violence, with armed robbery, assault, murder...that kind of thing," says Huennekens. He tells KTRH that these violent gang members often prey upon immigrant communities. "Not only does it threaten (native-born citizens) of these large cities that they end up going to, but it's threatening the legal immigrants there who are trying to make a way in this country."

 The Trump Administration has threatened to pull federal funding from cities with sanctuary policies, but that move has been challenged in federal court as the debate continues. Huennekens argues that these latest numbers show this is more than just a political or legal debate. "When cities and towns enact these policies, they have very real effects," he says. "These are very violent people who are now out roaming the streets."

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