• L&T staff report
As part of ongoing efforts of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to focus agency resources on the removal of criminal aliens and egregious immigration law violators, 19 convicted criminal aliens, immigration fugitives and other immigration violators were arrested during an operation carried out during the past week in Liberal.
The Liberal Police Department said the three-day operation, which concluded last Thursday, was conducted by ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations as part of the agency’s commitment to prioritize the removal of criminal aliens and egregious immigration violators.
“Of the individuals taken into custody, 18 were criminal aliens whose convictions include: drug trafficking, drug manufacturing, aggravated assault, burglary, domestic assault, driving under the influence and illegal re-entry after deportation,” the LPD’s statement said. “The group also included five immigration fugitives who had outstanding orders of deportation four previously deported aliens.”
Those arrested during the operation include:
• A previously deported 29-year-old Mexican national with convictions for drug trafficking, theft and illegal re-entry after deportation. He was arrested March 26 in Liberal and is pending prosecution by the US. Attorney’s Office for felony re-entry; and
• A previously deported 43-year-old Mexican national with convictions for burglary, driving under the influence and illegal re-entry after deportation. He was arrested March 27 in Liberal and is pending prosecution by the U.S. Attorneys Office for felony re-entry.
“ERO strives to make our communities safer by arresting and removing convicted criminal aliens,” said Ricardo Wong, field officer director for ERO Chicago in the LPD’s release. “By focusing our resources on the most egregious offenders, we immediately improve public safety in the Liberal area.”
Following is the nationality breakdown of the 17 men and two women arrested: Mexico, 11; Guatemala, 7; and Honduras, 1. Arrests were made in Liberal, Hugoton, Elkhart and Buffalo, Okla.
ERO Chicago received significant assistance in the operation from the LPD and the Seward County Sheriff’s Department.