The Center for Immigration Studies has issued a new report based on a recent DHS document that shows a decline in interior immigration enforcement in 2014 and, more disturbingly, that 167,000 convicted criminal aliens whose deportations have been ordered are still at-large in the U.S. The report by the Center's director of policy studies, Jessica Vaughan, found that deportations from the interior of the country are down 34% from 2013 and 58% from 2009.

The drop in enforcement leaves more illegal workers in the U.S. to compete for jobs with unemployed Americans and legal immigrants and depresses wages in the industries where they may already hold jobs.

"Prosecutorial discretion as practiced by the Obama administration has transformed immigration enforcement into a massive catch-and-release program that makes a joke of the law, fails to deter illegal settlement, and allows even illegal aliens who commit crimes to remain here," Vaughan said Wednesday.

"These policies inflict real harm on Americans and legal immigrants, in the form of lost jobs, depressed wages, additional social services, and even lost lives. In addition, with the rise of ISIS and other terrorist groups around the world, our lax policies represent an unnecessary national security risk."

Here are some of the report's other findings:

  • Total deportations credited to ICE, the majority of which were illegal aliens arrested by the Border Patrol and CBP officers at the ports of entry, declined 15 percent from 2013 to 2014.
  • The number of criminal aliens deported from the interior also declined 23 percent since last year, and declined by 39 percent since the peak in 2011.
  • Catch and release policies continue. In 2014, deportation processing was initiated for approximately 143,000 aliens out of the 585,000 aliens encountered by ICE agents. Tens of thousands of those let go had been labeled a criminal threat.
  • The number of aliens who have received a final order of removal, but who are still in the United States, has risen to nearly 900,000. Nearly 167,000 of these are convicted criminals who were released by ICE and are currently at large.

Vaughan based her findings on the DHS report, "Weekly Departures and Detentions Report (WRD)", from September 22. The most troubling aspect of the report is the 167,000 convicted criminal aliens still at-large in the United States, and Vaughan said that number may grow even larger.

"The number of 'non-departed' convicted criminal aliens grew by nearly 7,000," she wrote. "Even more concerning, the number of at-large post-final-order convicted criminals grew by nearly 8,000 cases, while the number of detained aliens in that category shrank by nearly 1,000 cases. This means that more of the criminal aliens that ICE has been unable to remove are at large than ever before."

For more on this story, see To view the full CIS report, visit their website.

Interior Enforcement
Illegal Immigration

Updated: Thu, Oct 30th 2014 @ 12:05pm EDT