Trump Admin to Publish Weekly List of Crimes Committed by Immigrants

Donald Trump
Donald Trump in the Oval Office / AP
January 26, 2017

President Trump on Wednesday signed two immigration-related executive orders that called for a range of measures, including building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, cracking down on deportations, and, in a less publicized section, publishing a weekly report on crimes committed by immigrants.

One of the orders, titled "Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States," states that "removable aliens," or those who enter the country illegally or overstay their visas, "present a significant threat to national security and public safety."

The order also targets sanctuary cities that provide protection for illegal immigrants, cutting funding to these jurisdictions that "willfully violate Federal law," and fining those who shield the presence of illegal immigrants.

The secretary of homeland security is called to promote the "threat" of illegal immigrants by publishing a weekly list of crimes committed by immigrants, along with the sanctuary cities that refuse to turn them over for deportation, according to the order.

To better inform the public regarding the public safety threats associated with sanctuary jurisdictions, the Secretary shall utilize the Declined Detainer Outcome Report or its equivalent and, on a weekly basis, make public a comprehensive list of criminal actions committed by aliens and any jurisdiction that ignored or otherwise failed to honor any detainers with respect to such aliens.

It is unclear whether this list will comprise crimes committed by illegal immigrants or immigrants in general.

Retired Marine Gen. John Kelly was sworn in last week as the secretary of homeland security and will be charged with maintaining this list and overseeing the implementation of the broader provisions in Trump's immigration orders.

The order will not exempt any "classes or categories" of immigrants from enforcement, but will prioritize those who fit certain qualifications. These qualifications include those who were convicted or charged with a criminal offense or have committed an act that could be considered a criminal offense, those who have used public benefit programs, and those who have not complied with removal.

Immigrants may also be removed if they, "in the judgment of an immigration officer, otherwise pose a risk to public safety or national security." The executive order states that 10,000 border officers will be hired and trained to handle deportation, in addition to the 20,000 who are currently in place.

Entering the country illegally or overstaying a visa is a civic offense rather than a crime, according to U.S. law, Quartz Media noted.

The order maintains that "removable aliens" have "no right to be in the United States," and that "the Federal Government has failed to discharge this basic sovereign responsibility."