Illegal Immigrants Face Criminal Charges for First Offenses

President Trump has spent much of his first six months as president fulfilling his promise to end illegal immigration.

Although one cannot control the actions of hundreds of thousands of people, you can certainly deter them.

Whether that be with an increased presence of ICE or travel bans, Trump has proved incredibly effective.

His latest measure should deter some of the ‘bad hombres’ from entering the states.

According to the Wall Street Journal, “Migrants who are caught crossing the border illegally for the first time are now facing criminal charges in federal court in Arizona as the Trump administration steps up efforts to deter illegal immigration.”

Until recently, first-time offenders were deported instead of being criminally prosecuted.

That changed as of June in the Tucson Sector, which includes most of Arizona’s border with Mexico, the agency said in a news release on Thursday. The new program has led to 565 prosecutions.

The illegal immigrants are charged with misdemeanors and tried in federal court under Operation Streamline, a 12-year-old initiative in which the migrants are charged, enter pleas and are sentenced within a few minutes in large groups.

Just last week in a Tucson courtroom, 58 immigrants were tried. 35 were first-time offenders while the others were charged with illegal re-entry.

This, along with other measures by the Trump administration, has led to “a decline in the number of people crossing the border”.

Indeed, the Journal reported that “the number of people apprehended on the southwest border trying to enter the U.S. fell to its lowest level in nearly two decades” this past April.

Tucson Sector spokesman Daniel Hernandez said Operation Streamline “is aimed specifically to deter people from coming to the country illegally in a way that prevents death” because “it creates consequences in the west desert region where we’re having a lot of people distressed.”

Regan Pifer

About Regan Pifer

Reagan Pifer has taught and researched American history and politics in higher education for ten years. These are her rants.