Why did immigration officials release a group of undocumented activists arrested outside the DNC?
After police arrested ten undocumented activists protesting outside the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, those arrested were turned over to federal immigration authorities.
Hours later, however, the activists were released from custody by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
“ICE has taken no enforcement action against the Ride for Justice activists arrested Tuesday in Charlotte,” an ICE spokesperson told USA Today in a statement. “ICE is focused on smart, effective immigration enforcement that prioritizes the removal of criminal aliens, recent border crossers and egregious immigration law violators, such as those who have been previously removed from the United States.”
On its face, the move by ICE shouldn’t be surprising. The majority of the activists arrested likely qualify for one of two recent programs aimed at stemming unwarranted deportations, according to Tania Unzueta, a spokesperson for the group, which has been touring the country with the UndocuBus campaign.
But two of the protestors had previous immigration infractions, Unzueta said, which she believes would have led to their deportation under other circumstances.
Read more at Univision News