U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced the arrests of 302 illegal alien sex offenders as a result of Operation SOAR (Sex Offender Arrest and Removal), an ongoing nationwide initiative targeting unlawful migrants convicted of sex crimes.
Operation SOAR began on June 4, launched by ICE’s Enforcement Removal Operations (ERO). ERO’s Fugitive Operations Support Center partnered with the ERO Law Enforcement Support Center to identify criminal aliens who are registered sex offenders in communities across the United States.
Acting ICE Director Tae Johnson said of Operation SOAR, “Our officers have prioritized the arrest of noncitizens who pose the greatest threat to the security and safety of our communities.” He continued, “By focusing our resources on those who have committed sex crimes and demonstrated predatory behavior, we reinforce our steadfast commitment to enhancing public safety across the United States.”
While the arrests of hundreds of criminal aliens are certainly a win for public safety, it should also prompt Americans to ask: Will President Joe Biden direct his administration to increase the frequency of these ICE raids?
It’s no secret the Biden administration has shown hostility to immigration enforcement. In February, the administration abruptly canceled Operation Talon, a similar countrywide dragnet that aimed to arrest unlawful migrant sex offenders. The last-minute scrapping of the program captured the attention of 18 state attorney generals who urged the administration to reinstate the sting.
To make matters worse, that same month, the administration issued a memo that not only placed a 100-day pause on deportations but also diminished ICE’s purview for apprehending immigration lawbreakers. In April, FOX 29’s Yami Virgin reported that in San Antonio, scores of criminal aliens were released from local jails back into the community due to the Biden administration’s enforcement memo barring ICE authorities from taking custody of these criminals. Some of these offenders were convicted of crimes such as aggravated assault on a peace officer, family violence, drug-related charges, and sex offenses.
The increase of criminal aliens entering through the southern border should be reason alone to increase enforcement operations across the country. The apprehension of more than 300 dangerous criminals is a step in the right direction, but the administration must go further and rescind the memos that prevent ICE agents from removing immigration law violators. Because, as things stand currently, President Biden is placing Americans and lawful immigrants at risk with these dangerous policies that coddle illegal aliens.