U.S. immigration arrests surge 40% under Donald Trump

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Almost 75% of the ICE arrests under the Trump administration were for convicted criminals, according to the agency.

The number of arrests so far this year is 37.6 percent higher than the number of detentions during the same period of 2016.

The aggressive push against illegal immigration comes after one of President Donald Trump's first executive orders.

Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan said in a statement that the agency is now focusing on people with criminal records, to whom US President Donald Trump has described as "bad guys" during his presidential election campaign.

"Those that enter the country illegally, they do violate the law, that is a criminal act", Homan said, while emphasizing that immigrants who pose a threat to national security or have criminal records are still a priority for the agency.

Many had charges or convictions that include homicide, assault, sexual abuse, and drug-related offenses.

Although a reported 75% of the 41,000-plus individuals arrested in 2017 had criminal records, according to the agency, noncriminal arrests also skyrocketed in 2017, reaching more than 10,800 (from about 4,200 in 2016).

Overall, 41,300 people were arrested for deportation, a 38 percent increase from a comparable period previous year.

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President Trump's executive orders on immigration have led to a surge in ICE immigration arrests and deportations, the agency announced Wednesday.

The increase in arrests of people without criminal convictions has generated outrage among Trump opponents, who believe that otherwise-law-abiding families are being rounded up. "If we don't take action on those orders, then we are just spinning our wheels".

A man being detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement died Tuesday at an Atlanta hospital while in custody.

Homan says, "We are a nation of laws, and ignoring orders issued by federal judges undermines our constitutional government".

The change in policy caused the arrests of undocumented migrants without criminal records to more than double, according to ICE data released on Wednesday.

"ICE deportations and large-scale enforcement operations all but stopped during the past eight years".

Overall, 41,300 people were arrested for deportation.

Under the Trump administration, Avelica-Gonzalez is among the 11 million undocumented immigrants that are "priority" targets for deportation - setting the stage for what the Human Rights Watch (HRW) has called "a nationwide dragnet" that would harm millions of people.

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