News / USA

    Immigration Enforcement Top Crime Priority for US

    Special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations escort Jorge Sosa, a former Guatemalan army commando, following his extradition, Sept. 22, 2012.
    Special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations escort Jorge Sosa, a former Guatemalan army commando, following his extradition, Sept. 22, 2012.
    VOA News
    A new report casts immigration enforcement as the U.S. government's top anti-crime priority, marked by a two-decade shift in funding that has put more staff, equipment and screening capabilities to work protecting the country's borders.

    The report by the non-partisan Migration Policy Institute, based in Washington, comes amid recent reforms by the White House easing policies for some illegal immigrants and criticism by Republican lawmakers who want a greater focus on enforcement efforts.

    The report notes that funding last year for immigration enforcement agencies totaled close to $18 billion, more than $3 billion higher than the combined budgets of the country's other principal law enforcement agencies. That $18 billion figure includes the budget of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which has some functions not related to immigration, such as inspecting cargo at U.S. ports.

    Rising Costs of Immigration EnforcementRising Costs of Immigration Enforcement
    x
    Rising Costs of Immigration Enforcement
    Rising Costs of Immigration Enforcement
    But in 1986, spending for the other agencies was several times higher than the chief immigration enforcement body.  That same year, lawmakers enacted an immigration reform act that included amnesty for about 3 million illegal immigrants.

    Since then, the report says, the United States has spent $187 billion on immigration enforcement, creating historic levels of border patrol staffing and infrastructure.

    Apprehensions at the nation's borders have dropped dramatically, from more than 1.6 million in 2000 to about 340,000 in 2011. Meanwhile, the number of non-citizens deported from the United States has risen sharply, from 30,000 in 1990 to nearly 392,000 in 2011.

    U.S. Immigration SpendingU.S. Immigration Spending
    x
    U.S. Immigration Spending
    U.S. Immigration Spending
    Doris Meissner, the head of MPI's U.S. Immigration Policy program, says that while the government has focused on building enforcement capabilities and improving their performance, enforcement alone is not sufficient to address the challenges that immigration poses to the country's future.  Meissner served as commissioner of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service in the 1990s.

    The report, released Monday, says fewer than half of those deported from the United States are removed following a hearing, with the Department of Homeland Security using its administrative powers to carry out a majority of the removals.

    It also notes the role of economic factors in the shifting pattern of immigration, with a weaker U.S. economy and more opportunities at home slowing the number of people seeking to get into the country.

    You May Like

    Republicans Struggle With Reality of Trump Nomination

    Despite calls for unity by presumptive presidential nominee, analysts see inevitable fragmentation of party ahead of November election and beyond

    Spanish Warrants Point to Russian Govt. Links to Organized Crime

    Links to several Russians, some of them reputedly close Putin associates, backed by ‘very strong evidence,’ Spanish judge says

    Video US Worried Political Chaos in Iraq Will Hurt IS Fight

    Iraq needs stable, central government to push back against Islamic State, US says, but others warn that Baghdad may not have unified front any time soon

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Charles Edward Brown
    January 08, 2013 12:32 PM
    All these resources spent and we still have over 12 million illegal aliens living in the United States. We need stronger Enforcement of employers of these illegal aliens. Make E-Verify both mandatory and retro-active so that every company will have to fire their illegal alien workers so that they can hire American citizens. Millions of jobs could be created and we can start sending home the millions of unwanted illegal aliens.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limitedi
    X
    Katie Arnold
    May 04, 2016 12:31 PM
    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limited

    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Taliban Threats Force Messi Fan to Leave Afghanistan

    A young Afghan boy, who recently received autographed shirts and a football from his soccer hero Lionel Messi, has fled his country due to safety concerns. He and his family are now taking refuge in neighboring Pakistan. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.
    Video

    Video Major Rubbish Burning Experiment Captures Destructive Greenhouse Gases

    The world’s first test to capture environmentally harmful carbon dioxide gases from the fumes of burning rubbish took place recently in Oslo, Norway. The successful experiment at the city's main incinerator plant, showcased a method for capturing most of the carbon dioxide. VOA’s Deborah Block has more.
    Video

    Video EU Visa Block Threatens To Derail EU-Turkey Migrant Deal

    Turkish citizens could soon benefit from visa-free travel to Europe as part of the recent deal between the EU and Ankara to stem the flow of refugees. In return, Turkey has pledged to keep the migrants on Turkish soil and crack down on those who are smuggling them. Brussels is set to publish its latest progress report Wednesday — but as Henry Ridgwell reports from London, many EU lawmakers are threatening to veto the deal over human rights concerns.
    Video

    Video Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Ruling

    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Painting Captures President Lincoln Assassination Aftermath

    A newly restored painting captures the moments following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865. It was recently unveiled at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, where America’s 16th president was shot. It is the only known painting by an eyewitness that captures the horror of that fateful night. VOA’s Julie Taboh tells us more about the painting and what it took to restore it to its original condition.
    Video

    Video Elephant Summit Results in $5M in Pledges, Presidential Support

    Attended and supported by three African presidents, a three-day anti-poaching summit has concluded in Kenya, resulting in $5 million in pledges and a united message to the world that elephants are worth more alive than dead. The summit culminated at the Nairobi National Park with the largest ivory burn in history. VOA’s Jill Craig attended the summit and has this report about the outcomes.
    Video

    Video Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroad

    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.
    Video

    Video Ethiopia’s Drought Takes Toll on Children

    Ethiopia is dealing with its worst drought in decades, thanks to El Nino weather patterns. An estimated 10 million people urgently need food aid. Six million of them are children, whose development may be compromised without sufficient help, Marthe van der Wolf reports for VOA from the Metahara district.
    Video

    Video Little Havana - a Slice of Cuban Culture in Florida

    Hispanic culture permeates everything in Miami’s Little Havana area: elderly men playing dominoes as they discuss politics, cigar rollers deep at work, or Cuban exiles talking with presidential candidates at a Cuban coffee window. With the recent rapprochement between Cuba and United States, one can only expect stronger ties between South Florida and Cuba.
    Video

    Video California Republicans Weigh Presidential Choices Amid Protests

    Republican presidential candidates have been wooing local party leaders in California, a state that could be decisive in selecting the party's nominee for U.S. president. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports delegates to the California party convention have been evaluating choices, while front-runner Donald Trump drew hundreds of raucous protesters Friday.
    Video

    Video ‘The Lights of Africa’ - Through the Eyes of 54 Artists

    An exhibition bringing together the work of 54 African artists, one from each country, is touring the continent after debuting at COP21 in Paris. Called "Lumières d'Afrique," the show centers on access to electricity and, more figuratively, ideas that enlighten. Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, the exhibition's first stop.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora