ICE Targets Middlesex County, New Jersey, in “Sanctuary” County Enforcement Surge

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced the end of a five-day immigration enforcement operation targeted at Middlesex County, New Jersey.  The operation, led by the ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Newark Field Office, resulted in the arrest of 37 individuals from Brazil, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Ivory Coast, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, and Turkey.

According to an official ICE statement, the “operation targeted criminal aliens who were previously incarcerated at the Middlesex County Jail (MCJ), and who were subsequently released to the community by MCJ, without honoring the ICE detainer or advising ICE of their release.”

The surge in ICE enforcement will only continue to increase throughout New Jersey, particularly given the approach the state has taken towards federal immigration enforcement actions and limiting cooperation with federal immigration officials.

The Newark Field Office’s Acting Director, Ruben Perez, noted that “ERO New Jersey will continue to enforce ICE’s commitment to public safety,” without regard to a city or county considers itself a “sanctuary” for those who violate federal immigration laws:

Middlesex County, which aspires to be a “sanctuary” by protecting criminal aliens, in the process assists criminals in undermining federal law, and creates a dangerous environment in the community.  It also overburdens local law enforcement.  ICE will continue to execute its mission in such communities.

If you have any questions about this post or any other immigration matter, feel free to contact me at rglahoud@nmmlaw.com.