Several gang members and individuals with previous convictions for manslaughter, rape and assaulting law enforcement officers were among 162 people arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement during a three-day action in the Los Angeles area, federal authorities announced Thursday.
The arrests targeted "at-large criminal aliens, illegal re-entrants and immigration fugitives, and aliens released back in to the community after detainers filed by ICE with local law enforcement officials were ignored," ICE said in a release.
The agency said "almost 90 percent" of those arrested in the Los Angeles and surrounding area had criminal convictions, including for sex crimes against children. It added that in 53 of the arrest cases, ICE had filed detainers with local law enforcement officials notifying them of the agency's intent to assume custody of the aliens once they were no longer being held by local authorities.
"At-large criminal alien arrests are among the most dangerous types of enforcement actions ICE officers are engaged in [on a] daily basis," said David Marin, field office director for ICE enforcement and removal operations in Los Angeles. "Thanks to their remarkable efforts, there are 143 fewer criminals on the streets. We will continue to dedicate more resources to conduct at-large arrests to ensure the safety of the law-abiding citizens of our Southland communities."
ICE said one of the arrests involved a 32-year-old Mexican national who had been convicted of rape and was sentenced to eight years in prison. "This individual has also been identified as a documented gang member," ICE said in a release.
The federal agency said the arrests also included a 47-year-old, previously deported, El Salvadorian national who was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and sentenced to seven years' jail time. It added that federal "databases indicate this individual was released by local authorities despite an ICE detainer."