Federal immigration authorities are done playing games with cities like New York. After having another handful of their detainer requests ignored by city officials over the past month, ICE is now issuing “immigration subpoenas” to the city, demanding that Mayor Bill de Blasio’s government begin turning over information about current inmates with deportation orders against them.
“This is not a request, it’s a demand,” said ICE senior official Henry Lucero. “This is a last resort for us. Dangerous criminals are being released every single day in New York.”
NYC officials remain stubbornly defiant.
“New York City will not change the policies that have made us the safest big city in America,” a spokesperson for de Blasio’s office told the Associated Press.
Oh, rest assured, New York: It is not your sanctuary policies that have cleaned up the streets. The mere idea that refusing to cooperate with federal immigration authorities is the root cause of your city’s relatively clean crime record is beyond the point of laughable. It’s actually a little sad, even as a blatant piece of propaganda, simply because it’s hard to imagine anyone taking it seriously.
Indeed, it’s hard to imagine anyone other than illegal aliens themselves taking the side of New York in some of these cases. For instance, the case of Reeaz Khan, a 21-year-old alien from Guyana who was being held in NYC jails on an assault charge. ICE sent city officials a detainer notice, asking that they hold Khan in custody so that he could be transferred over to federal authorities and deported back to his home country. As per usual, city officials refused (although they now claim, absurdly, that they never received the notice). Khan went on to promptly kill 92-year-old Queens resident Maria Fuertas.
“It is this city’s sanctuary policies that are the sole reason this criminal was allowed to roam the streets freely and end an innocent woman’s life,” argued acting ICE Director Matthew Albence.
In a statement, Lucero said that ICE may begin using these subpoenas as a regular tool of compliance.
“Like any law enforcement agency, we are used to modifying our tactics as criminals shift their strategies,” Lucero said. “But it’s disheartening that we must change our practices and jump through so many hoops with partners who are restricted by sanctuary laws passed by politicians with a dangerous agenda.”