Tuesday, July 17, 2018

A Look At Immigration From A Virginia Town With A Fast-Growing Hispanic Population

Via NPR:

Immigration is near the top of the list of issues Americans find the most worrying. That's according to a recent poll conducted for NPR by Ipsos. Views on immigration diverge sharply depending on people's party affiliation, where in the country they live and whether they know people born outside the United States. Over the past few days, we've explored some of what we learned from that poll. And today we go to rural southwestern Virginia. NPR's Melissa Block talked with people in the small town of Galax, which has one of the fastest-growing Hispanic populations in the state.

Threefold Difference in Immigration Bond Amounts by Court Location

Via Syracuse University's TRAC:

In recent years somewhat over one in four detained individuals were ultimately successful in obtaining an Immigration Court custody decision that allowed them to be released by posting a bond[1]. So far this year, this success rate has been 30.5 percent, up from 18.4 percent during FY 2014. See Figure 1. Percent of Detained Individuals Granted Bond in Immigration Court, FY 2014 - FY 2018. 


This increase occurred primarily because more and more of those detained are receiving custody hearings. Judges have been actually no more willing to grant bond at these hearings. During FY 2014 in slightly less than half the cases (48.8%) were bond motions granted. A slightly lower proportion (47.1%) have been granted during FY 2018.
Nationally, for bond hearings thus far during FY 2018, the median bond amount set was $7,500. This amount is up by 50 percent from the median of $5,000 five years ago.

A median bond amount of $7,500 means half of all individuals who were successful in having their motions granted had to post a bond of $7,500 or more. Nearly 40 percent had to post a bond of $10,000 or more. Five percent had their bond amount set at $25,000 or more. Only 1 percent were released without having to post a dollar bond. And only one in twenty had a bond amount that was less than $2,500. See Table 1 for details on bond amounts at the end of this report.


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Monday, July 16, 2018

Where You Watch TV News Predicts Your Feelings On Immigration



Via NPR:

More than 1,000 people were asked about Trump's immigration policies and proposals and about which immigrants should get priority in the U.S. system. The poll was conducted in English and Spanish from June 19 to 20. Most respondents said they got their news mainly from TV.

On some questions, people who get their TV news primarily from Fox News or CNN are even further apart than Republicans and Democrats, with viewers of the other big TV networks somewhere in between.

ICE Arrests 37 People in New Jersey Immigration Enforcement Surge

NEWARK, N.J. — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Newark Field Office arrested 37 individuals during a five-day operation that concluded Friday, as part of the agency’s ongoing public safety efforts. The operation targeted criminal aliens who were previously incarcerated at the Middlesex County Jail (MCJ), and who were subsequently released to the community by MCJ, without honoring the ICE detainer or advising ICE of their release. The operation also targeted other criminal aliens residing in Middlesex County.

Of those arrested, 16 subjects had been previously released by MCJ without honoring the ICE detainer and 78% had prior criminal convictions or pending criminal charges.
“ERO New Jersey will continue to enforce ICE’s commitment to public safety,” said Ruben Perez, acting Field Office Director of ERO in Newark. “Middlesex county, which aspires to be a ‘sanctuary county’ by protecting criminal aliens, in the process assists criminals in undermining federal law, and creates a dangerous environment in the community. It also overburdens local law enforcement. ICE will continue to execute its mission in such communities.”
The individuals arrested as part of the operation were nationals of Brazil, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Ivory Coast, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, and Turkey.

These individuals range from 21 to 68 years old and all were previously arrested or convicted of a variety of offenses. Some of the arrests and convictions included: aggravated criminal sexual contact, aggravated assault, DUI, hindering apprehension, endangering the welfare of a child, battery, theft, burglary, possession of a weapon, forgery, domestic violence assault, disorderly conduct, and illegal entry.

The 16 subjects that were released by MCJ and arrested during this operation include:

A 68-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the Perth Amboy Police Department on January 23, 2009, in Middlesex County for the crimes of murder–purposely and hinder prosecution-false info and was booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On June 14, 2011, he was convicted of aggravated manslaughter and hinder own prosecution-false info and was sentenced to 25 years imprisonment in state prison. On May 5, 2015, the subject was transferred from state prison back to the custody of the Middlesex County Jail as he appealed his convictions. On May 5, 2015, ICE issued a detainer to Middlesex County Jail. On May 22, 2018, the original charge was overturned and he was found guilty of a single felony charge of hindering-oneself-give false information and sentenced to time served. Even though an ICE detainer was previously issued he was released.

A 21-year-old citizen of Turkey was arrested by the South Brunswick Police Department on May 10, 2017, in Middlesex County for burglary entering structure and theft by unlawful taking, and was booked into Middlesex County Jail. On May 10, 2017, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released. On July 15, 2017, he was arrested for resisting arrest, obstructing the administration of law, and possession of marijuana. On October 12, 2017, he was arrested by ICE officers in Monmouth Junction, New Jersey and was subsequently released on bond by the Immigration Judge. On April 12, 2018, he was arrested for a third time for simple assault, harassment, and possession of a weapon for unlawful purpose, and was booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On April 13, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored again and he was released.

A 32-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the New Brunswick Police Department on August 12, 2016, in Middlesex County for Aggravated Sexual Assault- Helpless Victim, Aggravated Criminal Sexual Contact, Sexual Assault-Force/Coercion, and Criminal Sexual Contact and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On August 16, 2016, ICE issued a detainer. On May 18, 2018, he was convicted of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Contact and sentenced to 644 days’ time served, parole supervision for life and registration under Megan’s Law. On May 21, 2018, Middlesex County Jail refused to honor the detainer and he was released.

A 26-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the North Brunswick Police Department on February 17, 2017, in Middlesex County for driving while his license was suspended and on his court date of May 23, 2017, he was found guilty and sentenced to ten (10) days of incarceration at the Middlesex County Jail. On May 31, 2017, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released. He also had a prior conviction for DUI.

A 46-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the Carteret Police Department on December 15, 2017, in Middlesex County for domestic violence/simple assault and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On December 25, 2017, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored by Middlesex County Jail and he was released. On June 28, 2018, he was convicted of Domestic Violence Assault.

A 34-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the Edison Police Department on May 29, 2018, in Middlesex County for aggravated assault and possession of a weapon and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On May 30, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released.

A 42-year-old citizen of Honduras was convicted of illegal entry on November 10, 2009, and removed. On June 12, 2017, she was arrested by the Woodbridge Police Department, in Middlesex County for shoplifting, and released. On March 11, 2018, she was again arrested for shoplifting, and released. On April 21, 2018, she was arrested for a third time for shoplifting, and booked into Middlesex County Jail. On April 21, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and she was released.

A 21-year-old citizen of Guatemala was arrested by the Green Brook Police Department on June 20, 2018, in Somerset County for driving under the influence of alcohol and by the Middlesex Police Department (later that same day) in Middlesex County, for burglary-entering structure, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property and hindering oneself/ false information and was booked into Middlesex County Jail. On June 21, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored by Middlesex County Jail and he was released.

A 21-year-old citizen of Honduras was arrested by the New Brunswick Police Department on May 29, 2018, in Middlesex County for aggravated assault, possession of a weapon for unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon, and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On May 29, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but he was released.

A 37-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the New Brunswick Police Department on November 25, 2017, in Middlesex County for driving without a license, and booked into the Middlesex County Correctional Facility in North Brunswick, NJ. On November 25, 2017, an ICE detainer was issued but he was released.

A 25-year-old citizen of the Dominican Republic was arrested by the Perth Amboy Police Department on May 25, 2018, in Middlesex County for harassment, hindering, and obstruction, and was booked into Middlesex County Jail. On May 29, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released. He also has prior arrests for domestic violence and forgery.

A 27-year-old citizen of the Dominican Republic was arrested by the Perth Amboy Police Department on January 25, 2018, in Middlesex County for aggravated assault - significant bodily injury to a victim of domestic violence, criminal restraint – hold victim, possession of a weapon for unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On January 30, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released.

A 41-year-old citizen of Honduras was arrested by the New Brunswick Police Department on September 18, 2017, in Middlesex County for driving with a suspended license and was booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On September 18, 2017, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released. Subject has prior arrests for forgery.

A 29-year-old citizen of Mexico was arrested by the Perth Amboy Police Department on March 12, 2018, in Middlesex County for aggravated assault on law enforcement and possession of CDS/analog and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On March 13, 2018, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and she was released. She has prior arrests for assault by auto and DUI.

A 28-year-old citizen of Peru was arrested by the Union City Police Department in Union City, New Jersey on May 08, 2018, for simple assault and booked into the Hudson County Jail (HCJ). At the time of his release from HCJ, it was discovered that he had an outstanding warrant for contempt from the Perth Amboy Police Department, in Middlesex County. He was transferred to the Middlesex County Jail on the warrant. On May 15, 2018, ICE issued a detainer to Middlesex County Jail but the detainer was not honored and he was released.

A 29-year-old citizen of El Salvador was arrested by the Carteret Police Department on September 1, 2017, in Middlesex County for Endangering-Abuse/Neglect of a Child and booked into the Middlesex County Jail. On September 5, 2017, ICE issued a detainer, but the detainer was not honored and he was released. After his release, he was arrested for DUI and subsequently convicted on March 15, 2018 for the same offense.

Those arrested will remain in ICE custody pending removal or immigration proceedings.

ICE is focused on removing public safety threats, such as convicted criminal aliens and gang members, as well as individuals who have violated our nation’s immigration laws, including those who illegally re-entered the country after being removed, and immigration fugitives ordered removed by federal immigration judges.

For the first two quarters of Fiscal Year 2018, ICE arrests comprise over 66 percent convicted criminals. Of the remaining individuals not convicted of a crime, approximately 23 percent have either been charged with a crime, are immigration fugitives, or have been removed from the United States and illegally re-entered, reflecting the agency’s continued prioritization of its limited enforcement resources on aliens who pose threats to national security, public safety and border security.



Last Reviewed/Updated: 07/16/2018

Thursday, July 12, 2018

DHS Northern Border Strategy

Via the Department of Homeland Security:

The Northern Border Strategy establishes a clear vision and discrete actions that will collectively improve DHS’s efforts to safeguard the Northern Border against terrorist and criminal threats, facilitate the flow of lawful cross-border trade and travel, and strengthen cross-border community resilience. It aligns with the requirements of the Northern Border Security Review Act. The Strategy and its companion Implementation Plan will improve the Department’s ability to identify capability gaps and evaluate measures to address them, allowing DHS to improve management oversight and optimize taxpayer resources.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Matthew Kolken Quoted in Bloomberg Law

“The adjudicators of the applications are now the enforcers of the law,” Matthew Kolken of Kolken & Kolken in Buffalo, N.Y., said July 9. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, not the USCIS, has traditionally handled enforcement, he told Bloomberg Law.

With the likelihood of removal increasing “exponentially” if a visa petition isn’t properly “squared away,” employers that spend a great deal of time and money sponsoring a worker for a visa could see that worker removed from the U.S. with few options, if any, for coming back, he said.

Click here for the full article.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

A review from a satisfied client

Before I hired Mr. Kolken I was working with another Immigration Law Firm that claims to have been around for decades with the best Immigration attorneys in the country. It was a major disappointment at all levels from incompetence to ignorance of some Immigration Laws to messing up my application (missing and erroneous information) to showing up 20 minutes late to the USCIS interview appointment.

As a consequence of their missteps, incompetence and disorganization I received a several pages long RFE from USCIS. After they reviewed the RFE the told me that my case is desperate now. That was when I decided to fire them.

After firing the first law firm, I did interview eleven Immigration attorneys from across the country including Mr. Kolken at the cost of hundreds of Dollars. Of all of them Mr. Kolken stood out as the honest straightforward attorney who explained to me the path forward to resolving my issues and the risks involved. I decided to hire Mr. Kolken.

My experience with Mr. Kolken and his Law Firm was exceptional. My file was handled by Attorney Mietlicki and Attorney Kolken. Mr. Mietlicki was accessible and responsive to all my inquiries and was there when I needed some reassurance. Mr. Kolken responded to the RFE by the due date.

Thanks to Mr. Kolken and his Law Firm my case has been resolved.

I want to say thank you to Mr. Kolken, Mr. Mietlicki and their staff for the professionalism and caring when I needed someone to talk to.