Nationwide criminal-alien crackdown nets scores of local arrests - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Nationwide criminal-alien crackdown nets scores of local arrests

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Eighty-four criminal aliens and immigration fugitives were jailed in the San Diego area as part of a weeklong crackdown that netted 2,900 arrests across the United States, federal officials announced Wednesday.

Throughout Southern California, more than 200 convicted criminal aliens were taken into custody during last week's targeted "Cross Check" sweeps, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.

The operation netted 103 arrests in Los Angeles County, 37 in Orange County, 20 in Riverside County, 19 in San Bernardino County, 26 in Ventura County and nine in Santa Barbara County.

Of those taken into custody in the city of San Diego, the North County and the Imperial Valley, 34 had felony criminal convictions for serious crimes, including firearms violations, robbery, and assault and drug convictions, and four were sex offenders, ICE reported.

The San Diego County arrestees include:

- a 54-year-old Vista woman from Mexico who is an illegal re-entrant criminal alien convicted of carrying a firearm -- a short-barreled shotgun -- during an illicit drug deal;

- a 31-year-old Mexican man living in San Diego, convicted of possession of methamphetamine and illegally carrying a handgun;

- a 34-year-old Vietnamese man and San Diego resident convicted of possession of illegal drugs for sale;

- a 33-year-old Mexican man, living in San Diego, convicted of being an accessory to a homicide;

- a 46-year-old Mexican man staying in San Diego who is an illegal re-entrant criminal alien convicted of petty theft and being under the influence of a controlled substance; and

- a 26-year-old Mexican man residing in Chula Vista who is an illegal re-entrant criminal alien convicted of assault with a deadly weapon and a drug offense.

The nationwide operation involved more than 1,900 ICE officers and agents from all 24 of the agency's Enforcement and Removal Operations field offices, as well as coordination with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the country. Arrests occurred in all 50 states and four U.S. territories.

All of those taken into custody had prior criminal convictions, including at least 1,282 aliens who had multiple criminal convictions.

More than 1,600 of the arrestees had felony convictions, including manslaughter, attempted murder, kidnapping, armed robbery, drug trafficking, child abuse, sexual crimes against minors and aggravated assault. A total of 42 are gang members, and 151 were convicted sex offenders.

The results of the enforcement drive "underscore ICE's ongoing commitment and focus on the arrest and removal of convicted criminal aliens and those (who) game our nation's immigration system," ICE Director John Morton said.

"Because of the tireless efforts and teamwork of ICE officers and agents in tracking down at-large criminal aliens and fugitives, there are 2,901 fewer criminal aliens in our neighborhoods across the country," he said.

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