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2010 February 28 Sunday
Santa Barbara County Crime Wave?

The Daily Sound reports the tragic details.

The spike in crime is particularly intense with murders and attempted murders, which have risen 588 percent in the last decade, according to the number such cases filed by the district attorney’s office.

“I think the numbers do really speak for themselves,” said Ann Bramsen, the county’s acting district attorney. “Nobody has to be in a position to exaggerate anything. [The numbers] just sort of are what they are and we are working vigilantly to prosecute the cases and hold the offenders accountable for the violent crimes they’re committing.”

Meanwhile the county has a $40 million budget deficit and is cutting law enforcement spending. I saw a public access channel county supervisors budget hearing and the cost per county employee has gone from below $90k in the 2004-2005 FY to almost $120k this year. They signed union deals that make total personnel costs surge. Non-union employees have got freezes and cuts. Union employees are getting raises. Of course this leads to cuts in personnel - including law enforcement personnel.

Ron Unz argues that once one adjusts for age Hispanics are not notably lawless. Okay, so then is the Santa Barbara County Hispanic gang crime wave problem atypical? Or does the county have an especially young Hispanic population? Or are criminals just attracted to the nice weather?

Update: Santa Barbara's crime rate seems stable. However, since the population is aging that probably indicates a rise in criminality for people 18-29. Since Carpinteria seems to have a third the crime rate one could always flee to the suburbs.

By Randall Parker    2010 February 28 05:16 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (4)
2009 November 30 Monday
Mexico Cracking Down On Border Criminals

For years I've argued that if the United States was to clamp down and build barriers along the entire US-Mexican border to stop smuggling and illegal crossings then one effect would be to make Mexico a more civilized and lower crime country. The flow of drugs, money, and weapons across the border empowers the Mexican criminal cartels and undermines control of Mexico by its sovereign government. The money corrupts police, army, and government officials. The weapons scare the police out of doing their jobs. Well, even Mexico's government has figured this out as a Los Angeles Times news article title demonstrates: Mexico tightens security at U.S. border crossings

The new infrastructure -- including gates, cameras and vehicle scales -- aims to hamper the smuggling of drug money and weapons to Mexican cartels. Businesses are protesting the increased wait times.

We should build border barriers that would force all traffic thru controlled border crossings. Then we should scale up the technology and personnel used to inspect vehicles and people at the crossings.

The Mexican government wants to stop the movement of criminals across the border. Good idea. The US government should do the same.

"We want security," Calderon said on a recent trip to Tijuana. "This requires sacrifice and measures that permit us to stop the trafficking of weapons, drugs, drug money and criminals across this border."

The US should systematically deport all the Mexican criminals who are in the US and should access Mexican crime databases to check for Mexican criminals who are in the US who haven't yet been caught committing crimes here.

Also see the articles from the LA Times series Mexico's Drug War.

By Randall Parker    2009 November 30 07:50 AM Entry Permalink | Comments (0)
2009 October 28 Wednesday
US Govt Not Deporting Half Of Illegal Alien Criminals

A new study from the Center for Immigration Studies highlights the effectiveness of a federal policy to allow local law enforcement officials to do immigration law enforcement. Section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) of 1995 enables police to detain illegal aliens. But a shortage of federal resources allows many criminals to escape deportation.

  • 287(g) provides a significant boost to ICE’s ability to identify and remove aliens who have committed crimes. In 2008, the number of 287(g) arrests (45,368) was equal to one-fifth of all criminal aliens identified by ICE in prisons and jails nationwide (221,085).

  • 287(g) is cost-effective and much less expensive than other criminal alien identification programs such as Secure Communities and Fugitive Operations. For example, in 2008 ICE spent $219 million to remove 34,000 fugitive aliens (who are mostly criminals). In 2008, ICE was given $40 million for 287(g), which produced more than 45,000 arrests of aliens who were involved in state and local crimes.

  • The biggest obstacle to improving and expanding 287(g) is the lack of funding for bed space to detain illegal aliens who have committed crimes who are discovered by local agencies. Currently ICE is removing fewer than half of the criminal aliens identified under 287(g).

Deportation of illegal aliens who commit crimes (aside from entering and staying illegally) is great for citizens because the criminals are, well, criminals. They prey on non-criminals. When police are able to identify criminals as illegal aliens the US government should make the necessary effort to deport every last one of them. That the US government can't even get it together enough to deport all the criminal aliens is pathetic.

By Randall Parker    2009 October 28 12:11 AM Entry Permalink | Comments (6)
2009 May 19 Tuesday
Criminal Immigrant Deportation To Rise Order Of Magnitude

That the number of illegal immigrants sitting in jails and getting arrested every year totals up to 1.4 million says a lot about the weakness of law enforcement against illegal immigrants. But even the Obama Administration has to concede that criminals from abroad should get deported.

Based on the pilot program, the agency estimates that if fingerprints from all 14 million bookings in local jails each year were screened, about 1.4 million "criminal aliens" would be found, Venturella said. That would be about 10 times the 117,000 criminal illegal immigrants ICE deported last year. There are more than 3,100 local jails nationwide, compared with about 1,200 federal and state prisons.

This move builds upon the Bush Administration's efforts to identify more deportation candidates in prisons.

From the FBI Featured Fugitives page click thru to the Wanted Murderers and note the pattern with the surnames. Surely if immigrant criminal deportation had been stepped up years ago we'd have a lot fewer murdered Americans and safer neighborhoods. Patterns in crime rates show how our immigration policy is damages the nation.

By Randall Parker    2009 May 19 11:32 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (1)
2009 April 12 Sunday
Rising Criminal Illegal Alien Imprisonment Costs

California spends $970 million per year imprisoning illegal immigrants.

Reporting from Washington -- Fifteen years after Congress promised that Washington would help states pick up the tab for imprisoning illegal immigrants convicted of crimes, California is receiving but a fraction -- less than 12 cents on the dollar -- of its nearly $1-billion annual cost.

The problem is that illegal immigrant criminals in other states are growing in numbers and other states are getting more of the federal money for locking up illegals.

But Congress this year provided $400 million nationwide to cover the cost of keeping illegal immigrants behind bars, less than what was provided a decade ago. In that same period, California's share of the federal money has declined from 68% to 39%.

"California's percentage of the total amount gets smaller and smaller each year as the issue of criminal aliens becomes more of a national problem," said Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-Valley Village).

Deport all the illegals and stop letting new illegals from crossing the border. Save billions per year. But even as the economy tosses over 600,000 people per month into the unemployment rolls Obama the Messiah wants an immigration amnesty. He wants to forgive them for some their sins. Messiahs can do that.

By Randall Parker    2009 April 12 11:45 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (2)
2008 August 04 Monday
Illegal Immigrant Backlash In Italy Against Gypsies

The Italian military has been sent into the streets to cut down on crime in Italy.

ROME — Soldiers were deployed throughout Italy on Monday to embassies, subway and railway stations, as part of broader government measures to fight violent crime here for which illegal immigrants are broadly blamed.

By the time it is fully effective next week, the effort will flank regular police officers and the military police with 3,000 troops, a visible signal to citizens that the government “has responded to their demands for greater security,” Defense Minister Ignazio La Russa said in an interview on the Italian Sky News channel.

The Italian government is conducting a census of the Gypsies.

Italy has also started a controversial census of Roma which involved the fingerprinting and photographing of all adults and children over 14 years old.

Roma - sometimes referred to as gypsies - are often blamed in Italy for the rising crime rate across the country and in recent weeks camps in Naples and Rome have been targeted in arson attacks.

In May an alleged Gypsy attempt to steal a baby resulted in vigilante groups in Naples chasing Gypsies out of town.

The incidents in Naples began when a 16-year-old Roma girl was caught inside an apartment last weekend, allegedly trying to steal a six-month-old baby girl.

Her arrest has sparked two days of bitter protests.

On Wednesday night, vigilante groups in the suburb of Ponticelli took to the streets chasing the Roma out of two squatter camps.

Molotov cocktails were thrown into makeshift huts as the Roma fled for the local police station. When they had gone, the two camps were torched.

Dublin Ireland has Gypsy troubles. The collapse of the Soviet bloc has released gypsies into Western Europe and Gypsy crime has predictably resulted in backlashes that are politically incorrect by American standards.

A recent arrival of a bunch of illegal immigrants (mostly from Africa) by boat shows that Italy's illegal immigrant problem goes well beyond the Gypsies.

Some 800 immigrants arrived in Southern Italy on Thursday (31 July), just a few days after the country declared a national state of emergency over what it describes as the "exceptional and persistent influx" of irregular immigrants.

A boat with some 400 hundred people on board was guided by Italian Coast Guard officers into the port of Lampedusa – a small island south of the Italian mainland, the Associated Press reports.

Subsequently, a series of smaller boats bearing some 400 additional people were intercepted by the Coast Guard, bringing the total number of detainees to 876, according to Italian news agency Adnkronos.

Some governments of Europe are cracking down on illegal immigrants much more aggressively than the US government has so far. But since Obama just caved on offshore drilling I figure there's a chance we can pressure him into tougher immigration restriction measures as well.

Update: Go read Stephen Browne's Rants and Raves blog post about Gypsies.

By Randall Parker    2008 August 04 10:18 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (29)
2008 May 03 Saturday
Muslims Overwhelming Majority In French Prisons

Christians and secularists are minorities in French prisons. Imagine their fate should they become minorities in France as a whole.

This prison is majority Muslim -- as is virtually every house of incarceration in France. About 60 to 70 percent of all inmates in the country's prison system are Muslim, according to Muslim leaders, sociologists and researchers, though Muslims make up only about 12 percent of the country's population.

On a continent where immigrants and the children of immigrants are disproportionately represented in almost every prison system, the French figures are the most marked, according to researchers, criminologists and Muslim leaders.

Sociologists predictably blame whitey for racism. I blame whitey too, but for a different reason: the French were foolish enough to let in all those Muslims in the first place.

Muslims commit disproportionate amounts of crime throughout Europe.

In Britain, 11 percent of prisoners are Muslim in contrast to about 3 percent of all inhabitants, according to the Justice Ministry. Research by the Open Society Institute, an advocacy organization, shows that in the Netherlands 20 percent of adult prisoners and 26 percent of all juvenile offenders are Muslim; the country is about 5.5 percent Muslim. In Belgium, Muslims from Morocco and Turkey make up at least 16 percent of the prison population, compared with 2 percent of the general populace, the research found.

Here is how Washington Post writer Molly Moore came across this story. This might be news to the Washington Post. The French government tries to hide it and provides no official figures. But see my July 2005 post Muslims Said To Make Up 70% Of Prisoners In France and my December 2004 post Most Prisoners In France Are Muslim.

Muslims see themselves as believing a religion that gives them the right and duty to rule the world. At the same time, the Muslims find themselves living in societies where non-Muslims are far more successful. So they have resentment and jealousy. The achievement gap can't be closed. The IQ differences between European and Muslim countries and the accumulated body of IQ research on genetic contributions to IQ make these differences in achievement likely to last for generations until genetic engineering can boost IQ of lower IQ populations.

But there is a solution: Send the Muslims back to societies where they can feel more equal. This will make France much safer for the French and for the rest of us when we visit France. Shouldn't the French government's top priority be the safety and well-being of the French people? Isn't the French government failing to carry out its responsibilities toward the French people?

Update: A reader argues in email that boosting the IQs of Muslims might not make them less Muslim and more liberal. Smart people of an opposing point of view would pose a bigger threat than dumb ones who disagree with you.

I think it fair to say we do not know what offspring genetic engineering is going to do to change political leanings. More than IQ is involved in determining genetic predispositions to believe various viewpoints. As I've argued elsewhere, some religiously devout people could even choose genetic variations for their offspring that make them more likely to unquestioningly accept the beliefs they are taught. Also, other genetic variations might make a person more likely to hold strong moral beliefs or to be more easily morally outraged.

The safe and prudent thing to do when faced with immigrants who are hostile to your way of life is to keep them out. Do not engage in triumphalist wishful thinking about the power of your culture to transform them to your political, moral, or religious persuasion.

By Randall Parker    2008 May 03 11:21 AM Entry Permalink | Comments (22)
2008 January 27 Sunday
Illegal Aliens Play Big Role In Virginia Gangs

A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies looks at illegal alien gangs active in Virginia.

WASHINGTON (January 2008) — Immigration law enforcement has been a key ingredient in the success of criminal gang suppression efforts in Virginia, says a new report by the Center for Immigration Studies.  As state lawmakers consider steps to address the illegal immigration problem this session, they should give high priority to institutionalizing partnerships between state and local law enforcement agencies (LEAs) and federal immigration authorities (ICE), as well as to immigration’s fiscal costs.  A large share of those involved with the immigrant gangs active in Virginia, such as MS-13, Surenos, and 18th Street, are illegal aliens.  Their illegal status means they are especially vulnerable to law enforcement, and local authorities should take advantage of the immigration tools available in order to disrupt criminal gang activity, remove gang members from the streets, and better protect the public.  Once explained, these measures are generally supported in communities around the state, including immigrant communities where much of the immigrant gang violence and crime occurs  Among the findings:

  • 25-50% of all gangsters arrested in northern and western Virginia are estimated to be deportable aliens.  Gang investigators estimate that 90% of the members of MS-13, the most notorious immigrant gang, are illegal aliens.
  • More MS-13 members have been nabbed in Virginia than any other ICE jurisdiction in the country (261 arrests out of an estimated population of 2,000 in the state).  Nearly 80% of the 341 ICE gang arrests in Virginia were members of MS-13.  The remainder belonged to 28 other gangs.
  • Immigrant gangsters are responsible for serious and often violent crimes in Virginia.  Nine of those arrested by ICE in the last three years were murderers, and six were sex offenders.  Their most common crimes were assault and robbery/larceny.
  • Gangsters tend to work by day in construction, landscaping, farming, and day labor, and at night are involved in organized crime including drug dealing, prostitution rings, theft, and extortion.

They also work in day jobs. Yes, legal work doesn't prevent them from getting into a life in crime. The authors of the report point out that increasing enforcement of laws against illegal employment will reduce the ability of criminal gangs to become established in an area.

Mild proposal: round up all the illegal El Salvadorians. Also, stop immigration from El Salvador.

  • 62% of alien gangsters arrested in Virginia by ICE were from El Salvador, 12 % were from Mexico, and 10% from Honduras.
  • Immigration law provides powerful investigative authorities not available to local or even other federal LEAs.  In addition, federal immigration law provides special measures to encourage cooperation of witnesses and informants, and to protect victims of crime. 
  • Researchers found no “chilling effect” on the reporting of crime as a result of partnerships with ICE.  Immigrant community leaders do have an important role to play in reinforcing the message that crime victims and witnesses are not targets of immigration law enforcement. 
  • Immigrant gangs are multiplying and spreading out across the state, and both ICE and state and local LEAs believe they would benefit greatly from receiving more formal training in immigration law, documentation and related issues that apply to criminal aliens.

Every state and local law enforcement officer interviewed welcomed a partnership with ICE and most praised local ICE agents for responsiveness and assistance.  However, some jurisdictions have restricted police ability to make inquiries about immigration status or verify identity of minor lawbreakers, and in some cases refuse to support federal immigration law enforcement.  A number of more rural or distant jurisdictions have seen increasing illegal settlement and immigrant gang activity, but have little exposure to immigration issues and little contact with ICE.  In addition, ICE’s limited resources, its primary focus on terrorism, and the resulting neglect of routine immigration law enforcement causes frustration in communities facing significant fiscal and economic costs from illegal immigration.  ICE’s inability to respond on a consistent basis has fostered complacency and cynicism about immigration law enforcement among some local LEAs.  

The report includes a number of recommendations including checking immigration status of all people taken into law enforcement custody.

By Randall Parker    2008 January 27 08:57 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (0)
2008 January 15 Tuesday
US Government Expands Criminal Immigrant Deportation Program

The New York Times reports that the Bush Administration is massively scaling up (finally) the deportation of criminal immigrants.

Federal authorities expect to identify and deport more than 200,000 immigrants this year who are convicted criminals serving time in prisons and jails across the country, the country’s top federal immigration enforcement official said Monday.

Imagine how much lower the crime rate would be today if illegal immigrants had been kept out and all legal immigrants turned criminals had been deported starting 10 years ago.

The effort to speed the deportation of foreign-born criminals is part of a campaign by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency to help federal and state prisons reduce the costs of housing immigrants, the official, Julie L. Myers, assistant secretary of homeland security and head of the agency, said in an interview.

It is a measure of the failure of our elites that in 2006 only 64,000 immigrants were identified behind bars. If the government can identify 200,000 in 2008 surely it could have done so in 2006.

In 2007, Ms. Myers said, the agency, known as ICE, brought formal immigration charges against 164,000 immigrants who are behind bars nationwide for crimes committed in this country. Many of those immigrants are still in the United States and are also slated for deportation this year, she said. By comparison, in 2006, the agency identified 64,000 immigrants behind bars, most of whom were deported.

This demonstrates the value of complaining loudly to the US Congress which has appropriated $200 million to deport criminal immigrants in 2008. They hear us. So stay mad about immigration and make your views known.

But I am puzzled by these numbers. What fraction of all immigrants behind bars are there for less than a year? There'd have to be a pretty high turnover to reconcile the report above with something Edwin Rubenstein observed a couple of weeks ago: Hispanics make up about 300 thousand of those behind bars.

But this begs the question ofHispanic criminality per se. It’s clear, based on national incarceration data [William J. Sabol, Heather Couture, and Paige M. Harrison, "Prisoners in 2006," Bureau of Justice Statistics Bulletin, December 2007. Appendix tables 7 and 8. PDF], that Hispanics are far more likely to be in prison than non-Hispanic whites.

In 2004 (latest available data) there were 290,500 Hispanic males in state or federal correctional facilities. That’s an incarceration rate of 1,281 per 100,000 population.

The puzzle becomes even greater when we consider Steve Sailer's observation that the far higher crime rate of native born HIspanics should mean that few of the Hispanics in prison are immigrants.

Why is it a good thing that the next generation of American-born Hispanics has so much higher crime rates than their dads? Linda Chavez trumpeted a study implying that American-born Latinos are eight times more likely to be criminals than Latino immigrants. Aren’t the problems posed by the first generation of immigrants supposed to diminish in the second and third generations, not increase? Overall, the Hispanic imprisonment rate is 2.9 times the white rate.

So how to reconcile all these numbers? The US government and state governments do not do a good job of tracking Hispanic criminal behavior separate from whites. You can see this in the FBI Uniform Crime Reports which fail (at least last I checked) to even report Hispanic crime as a category separate from white crime. This is done to make Hispanics look better and whites look worse.

Has the US government found many more immigrant criminals now that it has started trying to identify them? Or is the turnover rate of prisoners serving short terms so high that 200,000 can be identified from far larger pool of short term servers?

Update: Also see Audacious Epigone on the immigrant crime numbers. My own guess: The number of crimes committed by immigrants is underestimated due to the reluctance of the US government to track Hispanic crime and immigrant crime. The pressure on the government to track down and deport illegal aliens and immigrant criminals has turned up a lot more immigrant criminals than previously published estimates would cause one to expect.

By Randall Parker    2008 January 15 07:46 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (5)
2007 January 09 Tuesday
Criminal Illegal Aliens Repeat Offenders

The US government fails to deport many illegal alien criminals and they commit many crimes after they should have been deported.

Illegal immigrants are being released from prison only to be arrested on new charges despite government efforts to deport them and keep them out of the country.

The findings are part of an audit by Justice Department Inspector General Glenn Fine that suggest authorities are still struggling to deport illegal immigrants who commit crimes, even though most state and local authorities are notifying immigration authorities of the imminent release of prisoners.

Fine's office analyzed the cases of 100 immigrants who had served time in prison and found 73 of them were re-arrested for committing a crime after being released.

On average, each immigrant was re-arrested six times, ranging from traffic violations to assault.

The article cites Heather Mac Donald of the Manhattan Institute claiming that the US government lacks space for keeping illegal alien criminals detained while processing them for deportation. This is an example of how the $3 billion per week US burn rate in Iraq could be put to better use doing things that would increase our security.

George W. Bush and many in Congress want to grant a massive amnesty to illegal aliens. That'll drive up crime rates and raise social spending costs as well as increasing housing costs. Why do this to ourselves?

By Randall Parker    2007 January 09 09:46 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (7)
2005 December 19 Monday
Muslim Immigrants Drive Up Rape Rates In Scandinavia

Norwegian blogger Fjordman has the details in a FrontPage article. Look at what the Scandinavians have inflicted on their women.

According to a new study from the Crime Prevention Council, Brå, it is four times more likely that a known rapist is born abroad, compared to persons born in Sweden. Resident aliens from Algeria, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia dominate the group of rape suspects. According to these statistics, almost half of all perpetrators are immigrants. In Norway and Denmark, we know that non-Western immigrants, which frequently means Muslims, are grossly overrepresented on rape statistics. In Oslo, Norway, immigrants were involved two out of three rape charges in 2001. The numbers in Denmark were the same, and even higher in the city of Copenhagen with three out of four rape charges. Sweden has a larger immigrant, including Muslim, population than any other country in northern Europe. The numbers there are likely to be at least as bad as with its Scandinavian neighbors. The actual number is thus probably even higher than what the authorities are reporting now, as it doesn't include second generation immigrants. Lawyer Ann Christine Hjelm, who has investigated violent crimes in Svea high court, found that 85 per cent of the convicted rapists were born on foreign soil or by foreign parents.

Rape is an extremely scarring experience for many women. Why let in immigrant groups which will commit rape at much higher rates than natives?

By Randall Parker    2005 December 19 10:00 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (25)
2005 October 31 Monday
MS-13 Gang Uses Deportation As Free Trips Home For Visits

Members of the Hispanic gang Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) use deportation as a handy way to get back down to El Salvador and visit with family and recruit more gang members before heading north again with their new recruits.

Of the 70 passengers, at least four are members of Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, a gang formed two decades ago near MacArthur Park west of the Los Angeles skyline.

For one of them, Melvin "Joker" Cruz-Mendoza, the trip is nothing new. This is his fourth deportation — the second this year.

Wiry with a shaved head, the 24-year-old pleaded guilty in separate felony robbery and drug cases in Los Angeles. "MS" covers his right forearm. Other tattoos are carved into the skin above his eyebrows.

In the last 12 years, U.S. immigration authorities have logged more than 50,000 deportations of immigrants with criminal records to Central America, including untold numbers of gang members like Cruz-Mendoza.

There's something obviously wrong and highly fixable with this picture.

"I think most of the police departments will agree that you're just getting them off the street for a couple of months," said FBI Assistant Director Chris Swecker, who is coordinating investigations across North America, where the gang operates in a loose network of cells.

Deportations have helped create an "unending chain" of gang members moving between the U.S. and Central America, said Rodrigo Avila, El Salvador's vice minister of security.

How about trying felons for violating the law? Get deported as a felon. Come back the United States. Get caught. Go to jail for 5 years. Second time? 10 years. Third time? Longer still. This is not rocket science. It is basic law enforcement. Punish people for breaking the law. In fact, the law already exists for doing this:

After serving little more than a year in jail, Cruz-Mendoza was deported for a third time in January, records and interviews show.

U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested him in Arizona a month later. At that point, he could have been charged with a felony for reentering the country after deportation, which could have landed him in federal prison for as long as 20 years.

Law enforcement is a strong point with conservatives. The Bush Administration's failure to properly enforce immigration law even against felons is yet another piece of evidence that Bush is a faux conservative.

MS-13 members deported to El Salvador use their visits there to recruit more gang members and bring the gang members back north into the United States with them. So weak US border control and weak enforcement of immigration laws against repeat illegal entrants combined with deportations are together supporting the MS-13 membership recruitment operation.

The deportation revolving door is helping to feed the MS-13 franchise expansion operation into areas of the United States that do not have MS-13 cells. Your taxpayer dollars at work:

The move to the East Coast came after members met to work out which U.S. regions would be open to the new Salvadoran groups. With Southern California already claimed by existing cells, members agreed that Salvadoran branches could move to other parts of the U.S., according to gang members and U.S. law enforcement officials.

The article claims that the Washington DC area has 5000 MS-13 members. The franchise expansion is obviously proceeding apace while the Bush Administration and members of the US Senate continue to look for ways to pass a new immigration amnesty. Read the whole article. It is disgusting that the governing elites of the United States of America are letting this happen.

Update: An article by Al Valdez, an investigator for the Orange County District Attorney's office provides many details about Mara Salvatrucha.

Most of the Salvadorian refugees settled in the established Hispanic neighborhoods of the "Rampart" area of Los Angeles. However, Salvadorians were not readily accepted into the Los Angeles Hispanic community, and were frequently targeted by local Hispanic gangs. As a result, in the late 1980s, some refugees and refugee members of La Mara and FMNL formed what is now known as the Mara Salvatrucha (MS) street gang in Los Angeles. Like many other street gangs, MS initially formed for protection, but quickly developed a reputation for being organized and extremely violent. MS membership continues to be fed by refugees from groups like FMNL.

Since its inception in California and Washington, DC, Mara Salvatrucha has expanded into Oregon, Alaska, Texas, Nevada, Utah, Oklahoma, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Maryland, Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Canada, and Mexico. MS is unique in that, unlike traditional U.S. street gangs, it maintains active ties with MS members and factions in El Salvador. Mara Salvatrucha is truly an international gang.

Valdez says the MS-13 people send M-16s from El Salvador (where the rifles are cheaper) to the United States (where the rifles are more expensive). They also ship hand guns from the US to El Salvador because hand guns are harder to get there. So MS-13 are international traders who look for arbitrage opportunities and who try to make markets more efficient.

Looked at in this light the movement of MS-13 members into the US to spread out into every corner of America is an attempt to make criminal labor markets more efficient. Criminals are underutilized in El Salvador because there is not enough to steal and not enough people to brutalize and defraud. Libertarian Open Borders advocates should reflect upon some of the undesirable consequences of unfettered labor markets.

Update II: Mara Salvatrucha is also becoming more horizontally integrated and hierarchical in management structure.

Until recently, MS-13 wasn’t that big a player in East Coast gang culture. The reason for its weak position in the East Coast crime world was obvious: It wasn’t very well organized. MS-13 was comprised of a group of cliques that operated independently of each other.

No more. Law enforcement officials now report that gang members from across the country have come together to unite affiliated groups up and down the East Coast. The leadership for these cliques is now coming from as far away as California and even from El Salvador.

Robert Hart, senior agent in charge with the FBI, says that when individual groups of MS-13 unite, the results can be devastating. “The cliques, instead of operating independently of each other, are beginning to come together,” Hart explains. “The difference is by doing that, obviously you have a much tighter organization, much stronger structures and, instead of having various cliques doing whatever they want, wherever they want, there is one individual who is the leader and is able to control the payment of dues and the criminal acts they engage in. The result is very, very similar to what you would see in what we refer to as traditional organized criminal families.”

I know a guy who thinks Hispanic immigration is like Italian immigration and therefore fairly benign. Well, El Salvadoran immigration is looking more and more like Sicilian immigration.

Update II: In Central America the governments use tactics against the gangs that currently would not pass constitutional muster in the United States.

Honduran President Ricardo Maduro still has bitter memories of how his own son was kidnapped and killed by gang members in 1997, and has ordered a "zero tolerance" crackdown on gangs in his country. A law passed by the Honduran legislature makes illicit association a crime -- in other words, anyone looking like a gang member is arrested as a suspect.

El Salvador has a similar law, called the "Mano Dura," or Firm Hand, and now the "Super Mano Dura." But some human rights activists and even a former Honduran police commissioner, Maria Luisa Borjas, criticize the crackdown tactics as extreme and repressive.

But let the Hispanic gang problem get big enough and the populace of the United States will increasingly demand reinterpretations of the US Constitution to make harsher law enforcement tactics legal. The public will sacrifice freedom for safety. Open Border libertarians advocate a policy that will lead to conditions that will cause the American populace to put safety ahead of freedom.

By Randall Parker    2005 October 31 07:39 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (10)
2005 August 08 Monday
Mexican Criminals Hide In Los Angeles Area

Los Angeles offers a congenial environment for Mexican criminals who want to hide from the Mexican government.

LOS ANGELES – The killers cross the U.S.-Mexico border, assume new identities, get jobs, blend in among Spanish speakers and sometimes enjoy freedom for years.

But these fugitives from the law aren't border-jumpers heading south. As the recent arrest of one of Mexico's most notorious fugitives at a modest home outside Los Angeles showed, some criminals escape justice by heading north.

In the last 10 months, federal immigration officials have helped locate 13 Mexican murder suspects, along with hundreds of other criminals, hiding in plain sight in the Los Angeles area.

The vast Spanish speaking populations of LA provide an environment in which criminals can hide.

"There are large pockets in the L.A. area where you could live forever without having to speak English," said Jorge Field, who oversees the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement's fugitive operations teams in Los Angeles. "As long as you're law-abiding in the United States, as long as you don't have any contact with police, you can fly under the radar for a long time because there is such a vast population in this area."

Of course, some of these fugitives violate laws and harm people while they are in the United States. They are criminals after all.

US law enforcement personnel put some effort into finding and deporting criminals back to Mexico. But the effectiveness of that effort is limited by rules in LA area police departments against treating illegal aliens different from citizens. While illegals operate large gangs in the United States and Mexican criiminals hide in the United States among Hispanic populations here lots of Mexicans and others commit crimes in the United States and then flee to Mexico secure in the knowledge that they'll be safe from extradition. Mexico won't deport criminals who face either the death penalty or sentences without eligibility for parole.

Mexican authorities will not return Raul Garcia-Gomez to the United States unless prosecutors agree to spare him from execution and life without parole, the Mexican consul in Denver said Monday.

...

The 20-year-old fugitive is accused of killing Detective Donald Young and wounding his partner, Detective John Bishop, as the two officers worked off-duty at a baptism party in Denver on May 8.

The irony here is that the worse the crime a Mexican commits in the United States the less likely he'll be deported from Mexico once he has fled there to escape prosecution.

The Mexican legal system considers not just capital punishment but even life without parole as cruel and unusual punishment.

On October 2, 2001, the Supreme Court of Mexico ruled in a binding decision that no extradition would be granted unless the requesting state gives assurances that a term of years would be imposed and the suspect would be eligible for parole. In so ruling, the Court held that the purpose of punishment is rehabilitation. Life imprisonment is inconsistent with rehabilitation and, therefore, a sentence of life imprisonment violates their constitution because it constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.

In May of 2002, in a non-binding decision, a Mexican court ruled that assurances by a prosecutor have “no value because U.S. judges are autonomous, as their own embassy recognizes, so they would apply the punishments established by U.S. Penal Codes”. The Office of International Affairs has advised that they interpret these rulings as requiring that the assurances to be given by a judge. Such “judicial assurances” are a legal impossibility in the United States since a judge cannot rule on a case not before the court, and a judge may not prejudge the evidence.

In at least two recent cases, Mexican authorities have refused to deport or expel a US citizen without sufficient assurances.

The October 2, 2001 Mexican Supreme Court decision and its holdings were reaffirmed by the Mexican Supreme Court in April, 2004.

350 violent felons live free in Mexico out of reach of California law.

In California, officials estimate some 350 violent felons have fled south seeking protection of a Mexican Supreme Court ruling that the death penalty and life in prison without parole represent cruel and unusual punishment.

With Hispanics committing crime at a few times the rate of whites and with Hispanic incarceration rates 3.7 times the white rate the ability of Hispanics to escape justice by fleeing the United States reduces the deterrent value of the US criminal justice system. This leads to more crime and more victims.

Bob Baker, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League to which 9,000 LAPD cops belong, says Mexico entirely refuses to extradite its own citizens.

Having decided that no murderer should ever have to spend their life in prison, Mexico arrogantly refuses to return fugitive killers to the United States. It has consistently refused to extradite murderers if they faced the death penalty. A 2001 Mexican Supreme Court decision in essence halted all extraditions of Mexican citizens, or Americans of Mexican descent. That decision forbade Mexico to extradite anyone if he faced a sentence which carried the possibility of life imprisonment, saying it was "cruel and unusual punishment."

In short, the thoroughly corrupt Mexican judicial system has decided the U.S. cannot prosecute even U.S. citizens if they make it to Mexico. Since Oct. 2, 2001, Mexico has repeatedly refused to return suspects for prosecution. As of last year, the Justice Department had more than 800 open extradition cases for fugitives in Mexico. Those fugitives include cop killers. Armando Garcia, a Mexican national in California illegally, allegedly shot to death Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy David March during a traffic stop in 2002. He is known to be in Mexico.

The halt to extraditions is not absolutely complete. A rare few still get extradited. In June of 2005 Mexico extradited the first Mexican criminal extradited to Los Angeles County California in 4 years.

LOS ANGELES – District Attorney Steve Cooley announced today the return from Mexico of a fugitive suspected of trying to kill two Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies last year following a routine traffic stop. It is the first extradition to Los Angeles County from Mexico since the October 2001 Mexican Supreme Court decision limiting extraditions.

The Mexican legal system is not compatible with the US legal system. We need a substantial barrier along the entire border with Mexico along with a much bigger Border Patrol force. Also, police should be authorized and encouraged to enforce immigration law and the US government should develop the capacity to accept and hold for deportation all illegals that local law enforcement officers take into custody.

Update: Also see my post "Heather Mac Donald On The Illegal Alien Crime Wave". Also, see a Steve Sailer post on just how cheaply illegal immigrants could be deported.

By Randall Parker    2005 August 08 10:30 AM Entry Permalink | Comments (8)
2005 July 21 Thursday
Muslims Said To Make Up 70% Of Prisoners In France

Some estimates put Muslims at 10% of France's population. Muslim overrepresentation in French prisons show what fools the government leaders were to let in some many Muslim immigrants.

Iranian-French researcher Farhad Khosrokhavar said in his recently published book Islam in Prisons that Muslims make up some 70 percent of a total of 60,775 prisoners in France.

As ethnicity-based censuses are banned in France, he said complexion, names and religious traditions like prohibition of pork indicate that Muslims constitute an overwhelming majority in prisons.

In the United States the figures I see for cost of imprisonment run to $20,000 per prisoner and higher. Prisoners are expensive. But criminals loose in society are even more expensive. They cause lots of damage and loss of people and property and also necessitate more money spent on security measures. Combine the lower rates of economic achievement of Muslims in France and seems very unlikely that French Muslims are a net econominc benefit to the rest of the people of France.

By Randall Parker    2005 July 21 11:52 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (11)
2005 July 04 Monday
Half Of California Former Prisoners Illiterate

In an article about a federal judge's decision to put the California prison system's medical care under an appointed receiver some facts about California prison inmates are revealed.

So many parole violators are returned to prison that they make up more than one third of all inmates. The Little Hoover Commission, an independent state research body that provides policy recommendations, estimated 18 months ago that the prisons spend about $1.5 billion a year on parole violators and parolees who commit new crimes.

When inmates do make it back home, they are ill-prepared, either by their stay in prison or parole programs, to hold down jobs or stay out of trouble. The Little Hoover Commission found that 10 percent are homeless, half are illiterate, as many as 80 percent are unemployed. Eighty percent are drug users.

In spite of a doubling of health care expenditures in just 7 years for California prisoners a US federal judge has just decided to appoint a receiver to take over management of the prison health care system.

California already spends $1.1 billion a year on health care for inmates -- a doubling in costs in just seven years -- but the level of care is so poor that U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson has said it violates inmates' constitutional right against cruel and unusual punishment. Henderson, based in San Francisco, ruled Thursday that a receiver would be appointed to order improvements.

No budget figures were discussed, but most expect costs to soar, perhaps for years, because of the system's desperate needs. In a separate area, mental health, a department consultant has estimated it could cost $1.4 billion to meet the needs of the growing number of mentally ill inmates.

Some critics see the large California inmate population as a sign of racism against blacks and Hispanics by putting them away for minor offenses. But a look at the most recent statistics for the prison system about what the prisoners are in for suggests this is not the case. About 15.5% of California's prisoners are in for murder (1st, 2nd degree, manslaughter) (PDF format). 11.1% are in for robbery and 6.7% for assault with a deadly weapon. Drug offenses amount to 20.6% of the total. Crimes against person add up to 51% of the total.

By racial and ethnic breakdown the California prison system is 36.3% Hispanic, 29.5% black, 28.4% white, and 5.8% other. {redictably whites and Asians are a lower percentage of California's population than they are for California's prison population whereas the opposite is the case for Hispanics and blacks.

The race/ethnic distribution in California shifted during the 1990’s with the White Non-Hispanic population’s share of the total decreased, while the Hispanic and Asian & Pacific Islander Non-Hispanic populations’ shares notably increased. White Non-Hispanics were 57 percent of the population in 1990 but only 47 percent of the population by 2000. The Hispanic population increased from 26 percent in 1990 to 32 percent of the population in 2000. The Asian & Pacific Islander Non-Hispanic population grew from 9 to 12 percent of the total over the same period. The shares of both the Black or African American Non-Hispanic and American Indian and Alaskan Native Non-Hispanic populations have remained constant over the course of the decade, at 7 percent and 1 percent, respectively.

With whites a shrinking minority and Hispanics increasing the prison population will likely continue to growth faster than the state's total population. The costs from crime, the criminal justice system, and prisons will rise along with the Hispanic population growth.

Aside: Black women are 29.8% of total imprisoned women and black men are 29.5% of the men. Okay, sounds kinda reasonable. But check out the Hispanics versus whites. Hispanic women make up only 26.6% of the total for women while the Hispanic men make up 37 percent of the total for men. Why might that be? By contrast white women are 38.6% of the total for women while white men are 28.4% of the total for men. Any idea why this might be?

The medical costs for Californa's prisoners is very high and rising.

The California Department of Corrections' healthcare network serves more than 163,000 prisoners, employs 6,000 workers and has an annual budget of $1.1 billion.

That works out to $6748 per year or $562 per month per prisoner for health care. Unless a large fraction of those prisoners are old that strikes me as a lot of money.

The system costs $7 billion total per year.

Bruce Slavin, who as general counsel for the Youth and Adult Correctional Agency is the top lawyer for the state's $7-billion correctional system, said "it will not be cheap." But he expressed hope that under a receiver, there would be better management of healthcare spending.

Is some of that spent on parole officers? If not, that cost per year translates into an astounding $42,944 per person.

A wall constructed along the entire border with Mexico combined with deportation of illegal aliens and a halt of legal immigration would eventually allow a decrease rather than an increase in California's crime rate and prison population. Also, all legal resident non-citizens should have their legal residency lifted to then allow deportation.

By Randall Parker    2005 July 04 04:20 PM Entry Permalink | Comments (18)
2005 April 21 Thursday
Heather Mac Donald On Illegal Alien Gangs And Restrictions On Police

Heather Mac Donald testifies about illegal alien gangs before the US House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security, and Claims.

Sanctuary laws, present in such cities as Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Austin, Houston, and San Francisco, generally forbid local police officers from inquiring into a suspect’s immigration status or reporting it to federal authorities. Such laws place a higher priority on protecting illegal aliens from deportation than on protecting legal immigrants and citizens from assault, rape, arson, and other crimes.

Let’s say a Los Angeles police officer sees a member of Mara Salvatrucha hanging out at Hollywood and Vine. The gang member has previously been deported for aggravated assault; his mere presence back in the country following deportation is a federal felony. Under the prevailing understanding of Los Angeles’s sanctuary law (special order 40), if that officer merely inquires into the gangbanger’s immigration status, the officer will face departmental punishment.

To get the felon off the street, the cop has to wait until he has probable cause to arrest the gangbanger for a non-immigration crime, such as murder or robbery. It is by no means certain that that officer will successfully build a non-immigrant case against the gangster, however, since witnesses to gang crime often fear deadly retaliation if they cooperate with the police. Meanwhile, the gangbanger is free to prey on law-abiding members of his community, many of them immigrants themselves.

This is an extraordinarily inefficient way to reduce crime. If an officer has grounds for arresting a criminal now, it is perverse to ask him to wait until some later date when maybe, if he is lucky, he will have an additional ground for arrest

The refusal to allow police to arrest illegal alien gangbangers just for being here illegally amounts to a death sentence for those they go on to kill and severe emotional agony for who they go on to rape or maim.

If all the illegals were deported our problem with Hispanic gangs would greatly decrease.

--A confidential California Department of Justice study reported in 1995 that 60 percent of the 20,000-strong 18th Street Gang in southern California is illegal; police officers say the proportion is actually much greater. The bloody gang collaborates with the Mexican Mafia, the dominant force in California prisons, on complex drug-distribution schemes, extortion, and drive-by assassinations. It commits an assault or robbery every day in L.A. County. The gang has grown dramatically over the last two decades by recruiting recently arrived youngsters, most of them illegal, from Central America and Mexico.

--Immigration and Customs Enforcement conservatively puts the number of illegals in Mara Salvatrucha as a “majority;” police officers, by contrast, assert that the gang is overwhelmingly illegal.

--Law enforcement officials estimate that 20% of gang members in San Diego County are illegal, according to the Union-Tribune.

-- The L.A. County Sheriff reported in 2000 that 23% of inmates in county jails were deportable, according to the New York Times.

--The leadership of the Columbia Lil’ Cycos gang, which uses murder and racketeering to control the drug market around Los Angeles’s MacArthur Park, was about 60 percent illegal in 2002. Francisco Martinez, a Mexican Mafia member and an illegal alien, controlled the gang from prison, while serving time for felonious reentry following deportation.

-- In Los Angeles, 95 percent of all outstanding warrants for homicide in the first half of 2004 (which totaled 1,200 to 1,500) targeted illegal aliens. Up to two-thirds of all fugitive felony warrants (17,000) were for illegal aliens.

The stories of some of these criminal illegals are horrible.

Five months ago, Carlos Barrera, an illegal Mexican in Hollywood, Ca., mugged three people, burglarized two apartments, and tried to rape a five-year-old girl. Barrera had been deported four years ago after serving time for robbery, drugs, and burglary. Since his reentry following deportation, he had been stopped twice for traffic violations. But thanks to special order 40, the police had never mentioned him to the immigration authorities, reports the New York Times.

In September, 2003, the Miami police arrested a Honduran visa violator for seven vicious rapes. The previous year, Miami cops had had the suspect in custody for lewd and lascivious molestation. Pursuant to Miami’s sanctuary law, however, the police had never checked his immigration status. Had they done so, they would have discovered his deportable status, and could have forestalled the rapes.

This is all more evidence that the US government's lax border and immigration enforcement amounts to our collectively saying "It's being-hit-on-the-head lessons in here". How long will it take for the cries of "Stop hitting me!!" to get loud enough to bring about a change?

Over on the Immigration Blog Heather reports that black left-liberal Congressional Represenative Maxine Waters demands real border control.

Enter Maxine Waters. Waters has poisoned racial politics in Los Angeles for years; she essentially declared the Los Angeles riots a strike against racial injustice. Never saw a cop she doesn’t think is a racist. Yet here she was at the hearing declaring herself absolutely fed up with the race war between Hispanics and blacks that is raging on the streets of downtown L.A. “Why isn’t anyone talking about the Mexican Mafia (a gang of illegal Mexicans that controls the California prison system)?” she thundered. ‘I don’t care if you’re pink or purple or white or black or brown, I want you out if you’re committing crimes.’ There is no excuse not to control the border, she said. ‘I’m a liberal with a capital ‘L’,’ she said, ‘but I’m sick of it.’

Waters' timing was impeccable. A day after she spoke, 100 black and Hispanic students at Jefferson High School in South L.A. attacked each other in a race- and gang-driven brawl; three days later, the same thing happened, this time, students also hurled bottles at the police. Principal Norm Morrow told the Los Angeles Times:"We just have a lot of issues with race," said Morrow. "It's coming out of the community, into the school." Cops in riot gear now patrol the school.

Also see Michelle Malkin on an MS-13 gang member who just killed an 18 month old baby in Houston. Also see my post "More Bad News On Hispanic Gangs And High School Graduation Rates"

By Randall Parker    2005 April 21 11:57 AM Entry Permalink | Comments (14)
2004 January 13 Tuesday
Heather Mac Donald On The Illegal Alien Crime Wave

Writing in the Winter 2004 issue of City Journal the always excellent Heather Mac Donald has written an absolutely must-read article entitled The Illegal-Alien Crime Wave.

Police commanders may not want to discuss, much less respond to, the illegal-alien crisis, but its magnitude for law enforcement is startling. Some examples:

  • In Los Angeles, 95 percent of all outstanding warrants for homicide (which total 1,200 to 1,500) target illegal aliens. Up to two-thirds of all fugitive felony warrants (17,000) are for illegal aliens.
  • A confidential California Department of Justice study reported in 1995 that 60 percent of the 20,000-strong 18th Street Gang in southern California is illegal; police officers say the proportion is actually much greater. The bloody gang collaborates with the Mexican Mafia, the dominant force in California prisons, on complex drug-distribution schemes, extortion, and drive-by assassinations, and commits an assault or robbery every day in L.A. County. The gang has grown dramatically over the last two decades by recruiting recently arrived youngsters, most of them illegal, from Central America and Mexico.
  • The leadership of the Columbia Lil' Cycos gang, which uses murder and racketeering to control the drug market around L.A.'s MacArthur Park, was about 60 percent illegal in 2002, says former assistant U.S. attorney Luis Li. Francisco Martinez, a Mexican Mafia member and an illegal alien, controlled the gang from prison, while serving time for felonious reentry following deportation.

Mac Donald has quotes from police captains and commanders speaking off-the-record about the problems that illegal aliens cause for law enforcement and says that these same officers are afraid to repeat those statements on-the-record. So members of the general public are left unaware of the conspiracy of silence that is keeping them ignorant of the scale of the law enforcement problems being caused by illegal aliens.

The police can not just arrest and deport an illegal who is a gang member or suspected of being involved in organized crime. Even illegals with previous convictions who have been deported whose return to the United States is therefore a felony (first illegal entry is a misdemeanor but all later illegal entries are felonies) can not just be picked up off the street by local police for deportation. Many local police forces are under orders to do absolutely no enforcement of immigration laws. Also, the US Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS, formerly the INS) doesn't have enough staff and funding for deportation even if the local officials were willing to turn them over. Enforcement of US federal court deportation orders has become a farce.

But even when immigration officials actually arrest someone, and even if a judge issues a final deportation order (usually after years of litigation and appeals), they rarely have the manpower to put the alien on a bus or plane and take him across the border. Second alternative: detain him pending removal. Again, inadequate space and staff. In the early 1990s, for example, 15 INS officers were in charge of the deportation of approximately 85,000 aliens (not all of them criminals) in New York City. The agency's actual response to final orders of removal was what is known as a "run letter"-a notice asking the deportable alien kindly to show up in a month or two to be deported, when the agency might be able to process him. Results: in 2001, 87 percent of deportable aliens who received run letters disappeared, a number that was even higher-94 percent-if they were from terror-sponsoring countries.

Criminal aliens also interpret the triage as indifference. John Mullaly a former NYPD homicide detective, estimates that 70 percent of the drug dealers and other criminals in Manhattan's Washington Heights were illegal. Were Mullaly to threaten an illegal-alien thug in custody that his next stop would be El Salvador unless he cooperated, the criminal would just laugh, knowing that the INS would never show up. The message could not be clearer: this is a culture that can't enforce its most basic law of entry. If policing's broken-windows theory is correct, the failure to enforce one set of rules breeds overall contempt for the law.

The sheer number of criminal aliens overwhelmed an innovative program that would allow immigration officials to complete deportation hearings while a criminal was still in state or federal prison, so that upon his release he could be immediately ejected without taking up precious INS detention space. But the process, begun in 1988, immediately bogged down due to the numbers-in 2000, for example, nearly 30 percent of federal prisoners were foreign-born.

Think about this. The US government does not provide enough money to deport illegal alien prisoners when their sentences are completed and yet it costs approximately $20,000 per year to incarcerate an inmate in US federal prisons. If the federal government has already kept an illegal alien locked up for years for murder, rape, assault, robbery, or a long list of other crimes and spent tens or hundreds of thousands protecting US citizens from a vicious criminal then surely it can afford to spend a small fraction of that amount of money to bus or fly released criminals out of the country. But do not expect George W. Bush to stand for protecting American citizens from illegal alien crimnals. Bush is too busy pursuing the Hispanic vote by any means necessary.

Federal immigration laws are so bad that even illegal aliens who are suspected to be terrorists plotting attacks are able to delay their deportation for years.

Another powerful political force, the immigration bar association, has won from Congress an elaborate set of due-process rights for criminal aliens that can keep them in the country indefinitely. Federal probation officers in Brooklyn are supervising two illegals-a Jordanian and an Egyptian with Saudi citizenship-who look "ready to blow up the Statue of Liberty," according to a probation official, but the officers can't get rid of them. The Jordanian had been caught fencing stolen Social Security and tax-refund checks; now he sells phone cards, which he uses himself to make untraceable calls. The Saudi's offense: using a fraudulent Social Security number to get employment-a puzzlingly unnecessary scam, since he receives large sums from the Middle East, including from millionaire relatives. But intelligence links him to terrorism, so presumably he worked in order not to draw attention to himself. Currently, he changes his cell phone every month. Ordinarily such a minor offense would not be prosecuted, but the government, fearing that he had terrorist intentions, used whatever it had to put him in prison.

Now, probation officers desperately want to see the duo out of the country, but the two ex-cons have hired lawyers, who are relentlessly fighting their deportation. "Due process allows you to stay for years without an adjudication," says a probation officer in frustration. "A regular immigration attorney can keep you in the country for three years, a high-priced one for ten." In the meantime, Brooklyn probation officials are watching the bridges.

The deportation process needs to be streamlined to make deportation a lot faster.

Those of my regular readers who do not share my hardline attitudes in support of radical immigration reform ought to take the time to read Heather's article in full. Even I am shocked by some of her revelations.

Those who think that it would be possible to put a stop to illegal immigration only by enforcing labor laws against the hiring of illegal aliens need to take note of the criminal illegals who do not work at legal jobs. Certainly labor law enforcement needs to improve by several orders of magnitude. But unless the police are ordered and encouraged to round up illegals and unless the BCIS and Border Patrol are staffed up and funded to conduct large scale deportations this problem is only going to get even worse than it already is.

Once you have read Heather's article linked above you may be interested to go check out a page of links to the collected articles written by Heather Mac Donald over the last few years on an assortment of policy topics including whether the police unfairly use racial profiling, homeland security, and other subjects.

Update: Heather's mention that 30% of federal prison inmates are foreign born allows the calculation of a yearly cost of incarcerating foreign born criminals. This US DOJ PDF file tells us that there are about 166,000 in prisons and the cost is about $20,000 (I'm rounding slightly). So 0.3 times 166,000 times $20,000 gives us a yearly cost of $996 million or almost $1 billion dollars per year (and it probably will be over a billion in 2004 since the number of illegals continues to grow). Throw in the cost for police to catch these people and the court costs of trying them and then throw in the costs at the state and local level for arrest, trial, incarceration, and probation and it is clear that illegal alien criminals are costing billions of dollars per year in criminal justice system costs alone (it would be a worthwhile exercise to try to calculate the total but I don't know where to get all the needed data). On top of that there are the many costs to the populace. What is the cost to a woman who is gang-raped? What is the cost to an innocent maimed or killed in a drive-by gang shooting? What is the cost for people afraid to leave their homes because their streets are controlled by gangs?

Update: Joe Katzman has also posted about Heather's article and there is more discussion on Joe's Winds of Change blog.

By Randall Parker    2004 January 13 09:35 AM Entry Permalink | Comments (19)
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