St. Lucian caught in U.S. operation targeting criminals and immigration violaters

By SNO

(SNO) – A St. Lucian is among 91 foreign nationals arrested by the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency during a five-day operation in New Jersey that targeted “at-large criminal aliens, illegal re-entrants and other immigration violators” — the organisation said in a press release.

The identity of those arrested were not disclosed in the release.

The St. Lucian is among 30 Caribbean nationals nabbed in the operation. They include one person from Anguilla, three from Cuba, 14 from the Dominican Republic, three from Jamaica, two from Guyana, three from Haiti, and three from Trinidad and Tobago.

ICE said Caribbean detainees include a 23-year-old Anguillan national who is a member of the Bloods gang; a 24-year-old Jamaican national who has convictions of endangering the welfare of a child and lewdness; a 32-year-old Dominican national who has convictions of possession of cocaine, domestic violence assault, and trespassing; and a 54-year-old Dominican national who has convictions for kidnapping and aggravated assault.

Nationals from Bangladesh (1 person), Cameroon (1), Colombia (4), Ecuador (4), Egypt (1), El Salvador (10), Ghana (1), Guatemala (3), Guinea (1), Honduras (4), Korea (2), Macedonia (2), Mexico (12), Nicaragua (1), Pakistan (2), Philippines (4), Peru (4), Poland (1), Spain (1), and Venezuela (2) were also detained.

ICE said of those arrested during the operation, 77 per cent of the 91 people detained were convicted criminals and 70 per cent had prior felony convictions.

The immigrants, according to ICE, who range from 19 to 78 years old, had previous convictions such as sexual assault on a minor, child abuse, possession of narcotics, distribution of narcotics, money laundering, DUI, fraud, domestic violence, theft, possession of a weapon, burglary, larceny, aggravated assault, aggravated assault on law enforcement, resisting arrest, endangering the welfare of a child, kidnapping and illegal reentry.

ICE said all the detainees will go through “removal proceedings before an immigration judge or for those under a final order of removal, arrangements will be made to remove them from the U.S.”.

Field Office Director of ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations in Newark, John Tsoukaris, said: “This operation focuses on the arrest of individuals convicted of serious crimes and are a threat to public safety. Because of the targeted efforts of these professional officers, there are 91 fewer criminals in our communities.”

Acting Director New York Field Office Frank Russo said the U.S. Customs and Border Protection is “extremely proud” to have assisted in the operation.

“It is through collaborative efforts that law enforcement agencies can combat illegal acts and apprehend criminals who pose a threat to the Homeland,” Russo said.

The immigrant sweep was supported by ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and US Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) New Jersey Field Office.

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