U.S. says it will separate families crossing border illegally

08 May, 2018, 02:30 | Author: Orlando Hughes
  • Attorney General Jeff Sessions to visit San Diego border Monday

Beauregard SessionsWhite House steps up efforts to confirm Central Intelligence Agency director Sentencing reform is moving in the wrong direction We should oppose Gina Haspel's Central Intelligence Agency nomination because of her torture record MORE on Monday is reportedly set to announce that the administration will increase its prosecution of parents crossing the USA border illegally, in the hope it will convince people to avoid making the trek for fear they will be separated from their children.

Sessions and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) acting Director Thomas Homan will reportedly be making the announcement in San Diego on Monday.

Earlier Monday, Sessions announced that the Department of Homeland Security has agreed to refer anyone who crosses into the US through the Mexican border to his office to be prosecuted. "If you're smuggling a child, then we are going to prosecute you, and that child will be separated from you, probably, as required by law".

"I have put in place a "zero tolerance" policy for illegal entry on our Southwest border", he said.

Reuters first reported the government's idea to separate parents and children apprehended at the border in March 2017.

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Sessions also announced the Justice Department's intention to criminally prosecute every immigrant who illegally crosses the border, as opposed to simply busing them back over the border.

Apprehensions have now risen to levels seen during the administration of former President Barack Obama, frustrating President Donald Trump, who has made illegal immigration a focal point of his administration. Trump tweeted on Friday.

But by referring immigrants caught illegally crossing for criminal charges, the move means that if an adult comes across the border with children, they will be separated from those children as they await their criminal proceedings.

The DHS official told the newspaper that families that are seeking asylum and properly present themselves at border crossings can remain together while they undergo the process of seeking protection.

The DHS said on Monday that there had been about 30,000 prosecution referrals since the start of the 2018 fiscal year in October, up from 18,642 prosecutions for the entire 2017 fiscal year.

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