This is a source for analysis, interviews, and commentary on security in Latin America. Herein you will find rumors, the results of off the record interviews, and information you'll not find in international or United States news media.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Overwhelming the System

According to a New York Times article, published 11 January, federal immigration cases are overwhelming the justice system from federal to local courts.

Some of the below highlights of this article are based on a study recently concluded by a Syracuse University research group known as the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse. Quoted material follows:

  • Federal prosecutions of immigration crimes nearly doubled in the last fiscal year, reaching more than 70,000 immigration cases in 2008.
  • Immigration prosecutions have steeply risen over the last five years, while white-collar prosecutions have fallen by 18 percent, weapons prosecutions have dropped by 19 percent, organized crime prosecutions are down by 20 percent and public corruption prosecutions have dropped by 14 percent.
  • United States attorneys on the Southwest border, who handle the bulk of immigration prosecutions, usually decline to prosecute drug suspects with 500 pounds of marijuana or less — about $500,000 to $800,000 worth. As a result of Washington’s decision to forgo many of those cases, Mr. Goddard said, local agencies are handling many of them and becoming overwhelmed.

On a light day, judges sentence between 40 and 60 criminals at a time. On heavy days, over 200 immigrants are handed sentences that vary from a few weeks to six months.

Reminds me of the Dark Knight when Two-face – before his accident – put 500 of Gotham’s criminals before a judge…

This article underscores one point more than any other. Eventually resources will dry up. We’ll never have enough judes, prosecutors, or ICE agents to capture, try, sentence, and the deport all the illegal aliens flowing in and out of the United States. And it’s quite clear that deportation is not a long term solution. Some of those deported are back inside the US in well under a week.

We can't police our way out of our problems with immigration.

Obama may have not wanted to touch the immigration lightening rod topic during the campaign, but one way or another it’s going to catch up to him.

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