DHS memo calls for 15k new border agents, faster deports

The Obama administration had confined such removals to those picked up within 100 miles of the border who had been in the country illegally no more than 14 days.

One memo instructs ICE agents to ignore Obama's memos on immigration priorities that targeted only recent arrivals and convicted criminal migrants for deportation.

Trump's planned measures against illegal immigrants have drawn protests, such as an event last week that activists called A Day Without Immigrants to highlight the importance of the foreign-born, who account for 13% of the USA population, or more than 40 million naturalized American citizens.

While the new policies call for a "surge" in the deployment of immigration judges and other personnel, DHS officials said the agency is not planning mass deportations and that numerous new policies would take time to implement.

- Expanded expedited removal proceedings: The memos expands the use of "expedited removal" of any undocumented immigrant who can not prove "to the satisfaction of an immigration officer, that they have been continuously physically present in the United States for the two-year period".

Unaccompanied minors who arrive in the United States would no longer be protected from deportation and their parents could face prosecution if they paid traffickers to smuggle their children across the border.

"The surge of immigration at the southern border has overwhelmed federal agencies and resources and has created a significant national security vulnerability to the United States", wrote Kelly, citing 10,000 to 15,000 more apprehensions along that border between 2015 and 2016.

A DHS official said Tuesday that the administration does not have a certain numerical threshold for how many people they intend to deport and that they want to quash the idea of mass deportation, in order to calm communities.

Agency chiefs are to begin hiring 10,000 additional ICE agents and 5,000 more members of the Border Patrol.

Salas said the guidelines represent an "unlawful, expedited process" to remove those living and working in the country illegally.

"The group will discuss border security, law enforcement cooperation and trade, among other issues", a Department of Homeland Security statement read.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters, "Those people who are in this country and pose a threat to our public safety, or have committed a crime, will be the first to go". The latest enforcement memos also include calls for Homeland Security to start planning for the costs and construction of the controversial border wall.

However, if approved, the new regulations would sanction the same procedure for those who have been in the country for up to two years.

"The Trump administration is intent on inflicting cruelty on millions of immigrant families across the country", she said.

The directives seek to expand partnerships with local law enforcement agencies to apprehend immigrants without legal permission to be in the country, hire 10,000 new Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers and 5,000 new Border Patrol agents and broaden expedited deportations, now limited to those in the country two weeks or less, to those who have been in the country for up to two years.

  • Larry Hoffman