Thanks to Jose Luis Benavides for passing on this update from inside the Artesia detention center. It reminds me of the OAKDALE, Louisiana detention center set up in the pine woods of central Louisiana in the 1980s. Central American detainees were flown and then bused to Oakdale from Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington DC and other areas where they had family and community. Oakdale was a 4-hour drive from the nearest metro area (New Orleans) and there was not a single immigration attorney in the state who spoke Spanish or knew anything about the wars, violence and human rights abuses in Central America at the time. For a great book about this earlier immigration crisis, see:
There is more information about Julio Porras (the main ICE informant in the Daily Beast piece) in this 2012 article from Reporte Indigo. Apparently Julio Porras is also Ramiro Chavez and he worked as an informant for the PGR during the same time he was providing information on Juarez Cartel activities to ICE.
Several stories on the current ICE tactic of transporting immigrants picked up in the Rio Grande Valley to Tucson and Phoenix, releasing them at bus stations. According to the articles, most of these immigrants have come from Central American countries.
Immigrant Surge In McAllen Crowds Bus Station In Tucson (The Brownsville Herald)
Volunteers, Travelers Help Stranded Migrants (AZ Central)
Homeland Security arrests over 600 gang suspects
By ALICIA A. CALDWELL, Associated Press Updated: May 2, 2014 9:53am
WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 600 suspected gang members have been arrested in the Homeland Security Department’s largest crackdown on street gangs, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said Thursday.
ICE agents, along with local authorities in 179 cities, arrested 638 suspected gang members over a monthlong period in March and April.
Click here to read the full article.
As of March 31, 2014, Immigration Courts with ICE PD closures in the three to four percent range included those in San Antonio, New York City, Las Vegas and Newark. The Houston, Buffalo and El Paso courts saw even lower levels: less than three percent. On the other hand, the PD closure rate for the Tucson and Seattle courts has been about 30 percent during the past 18 months.
For the complete list documenting the use of PD in each Immigration Court and hearing location, updated with the latest court data through March 2014, see TRAC’s Prosecutorial Discretion tool at:
For ICE PD usage in earlier years, see the TRAC report at:
To keep up with TRAC, follow us on Twitter @tracreports or like us on Facebook:
TRAC is self-supporting and depends on foundation grants, individual contributions and subscription fees for the funding needed to obtain, analyze and publish the data we collect on the activities of the US Federal government. To help support TRAC’s ongoing efforts, go to:
David Burnham and Susan B. Long, co-directors
Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse
Suite 360, Newhouse II
Syracuse, NY 13244-2100