ICE's Top Investigators Call For The Agency To Be Broken Apart

The top Homeland Security Investigations agents asked that ICE be restructured into two separate agencies.

Washington, DC – Nineteen of the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) top investigative agents have asked Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen to spin off their division from the agency, according to the Texas Observer.

The group sent a letter to Nielsen in the last week of June that called for the Homeland Security Investigations (HIS) unit to be separated from the ICE umbrella where it currently resides, and for the special investigative unit to become its own agency.

In the letter, the 19 special agents in charge said that ICE’s controversial detention and deportation policies make it nearly impossible for them to do their jobs.

They said that citizens and other law enforcement agencies don’t know the difference between HSI and ICE’s other main component, Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), the Texas Observer reported.

ERO manages the detention and deportation of illegal immigrants, a job that was handled by the Immigration and Naturalization Service before the creation of DHS after 9/11.

“The disparate functions performed by ERO and HSI often cause confusion among the public, the press, other law enforcement agencies and lawmakers because the two missions are not well understood and are erroneously combined,” the agents explained in the letter.

“Administrative actions have been mistaken for illegal investigations and warrantless searches. HSI’s investigations have been perceived as targeting undocumented aliens, instead of the transnational criminal organizations that facilitate cross border crimes impacting our communities and national security,” the letter continued.

“Many jurisdictions continue to refuse to work with HSI because of a perceived linkage to the politics of civil immigration,” the agents told Nielsen in the letter. “Other jurisdictions agree to partner with [HSI] as long as [ICE] is excluded from any public facing information.”

In other words, the agents said they couldn’t do their jobs as bigger-picture investigative agents for the nation if the people they needed to work with think they’re affiliated with ICE.

They also complained in the letter that budget resources for HSI were constantly being redirected to civil immigration enforcement measures.

DHS officials have shifted money from HSI to ERO on at least three occasions since 2011, including $34.5 million in 2016 alone, the Texas Observer reported.

The agents proposed restructuring ICE into two entirely new agencies in their letter to the DHS secretary.

The letter, which was signed by the regional supervisory agents from San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, Dallas, New York, Miami, Houston, New Orleans, Buffalo, Washington, DC, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Chicago, Detroit, Phoenix, San Antonio, Tampa, and Denver, tried to spin their request for a divorce from the ICE acronym in a positive way.

“HSI is constantly expending resources to explain the organizational differences to state and local partners, as well as to Congressional staff, and even within our own department — DHS,” they wrote. “The development of two new effective agencies is a positive step for the Department, as part of the progression that ICE has experienced since its inception fifteen years ago.

Former ICE Deputy Director Alonzo Peña told the Texas Observer that HSI agents feared that their mission was being sidelined because of the politically-charged atmosphere surrounding ICE.

Instead of “contributing to the welfare and safety of the country,” Peña said the agents were worried that HSI was “just becoming a political pawn for this administration.”

HSI was “supposed to be out there making these major cases, these big cartels that are smuggling guns, drugs, money. And because of this whole immigration rhetoric - that immigrants are bad, that they’re criminals and rapists and all that - the focus is totally off mission,” he explained.

Nielsen should certainly understand where the agents were coming from, even if she doesn’t take their suggestions. On June 19, the secretary was heckled by ICE opponents while she was out to dinner at a Mexican restaurant, USA Today reported.

Protesters angry about the Trump administration’s immigration policies filled the aisles of the restaurant, and surrounded her table, while they clapped and chanted, and generally disrupted dinner for everyone else in the establishment, too.

Comments (9)
No. 1-9
BlueJDN
BlueJDN

"Dear Investigators, Since you are having such a difficult time doing your jobs, how about we help you find new jobs by letting you go? Signed - Secretary Nielsen."

BiffCanlett
BiffCanlett

I don't understand why this agency is even necessary. Couldn't this job be performed by the FBI ?

Sugaree
Sugaree

No, they did not line the aisles very much. There were a little over 10 if that many.

HCD_is_my_bitch
HCD_is_my_bitch

@BiffCanlett FBI can't get a grip on what they're supposed to be doing right now. Lost a lot of faith in that agency with Comey and the gang.

Bill d
Bill d

Make it illegal to be a sanctuary City and make it illegal for local law enforcement to refuse to work with federal agents. And how cute. Local law agencies in sanctuary cities don't want warrantless searches and illegal investigations against illegals. Funny, Americans have secret FISA courts issuing secret warrants to illegally spy on we the people. The NSA spies and collects every single Americans data. But we can't have border jumpers being treated like Americans. After all, we all know that every illegal is an angel in disguise that we dirty, racist, horrible Americans can't live without.

Instead of changing HSI, make it illegal to harbor illegals and not cooperate with federal agents.

Asherjakeangel
Asherjakeangel

Illegal is Illegal! Put the people in jail who are refusing to obey our government & our laws. I don’t care what the status of the individual is, Governor, attorney, judges, mayors, congressional individuals ~ Everyone ~ who is NOT for LEGAL & co-oprating & Supporting The Thin Blue Line, ICE, and those attempting to do their jobs & continue to block these Heroes, NEED to go to jail & do some time! They should not be allowed to continue in their current job position/fired & fined BIG $$$, plus public service! NO on the FBI inference. They have proven to be unreliable & part of the Deep State & bought & paid for~ same as some in CIA, and even most of our congress (they need to be fired & put in jail for their absurd calls to terrorize our President, his supporters, & promote racial hatred, attacks & threats of violence on Trump supporters, & any Citizen who stands up & supports & loves our Nation! 💙 Stay Strong Ms. Nielsen!

ExFed
ExFed

ICE was formed in 2003 from the combining of the U. S. Customs Service Office of Investigations and The Immigration and Naturalization Office of Investigations. I retired from iCE in 2005, but had truly spent most of my career under the USC umbrella within the Treasury Dept. The USC employees were not happy about this merger and with good reason; shortly after this forced merger, the INS people took over most management positions and placed former INS agents in positions working Customs Investigations while Customs agents were literally forced to perform Immigration Investigations for which we were ill prepared and sorely unmotivated (Shades of DEA being formed by USC agents being torn from their agency.). The turf wars never ended.

Simply by returning USC & INS agents to their original assignments, ICE is dissolved and a problem created by politicians and bureaucrats is solved, pleasing the uninformed voters and vile politicians.

That being said, the dire need to rid America of these overwhelming numbers of ILLEGAL ALIENS remains. INS is better at that. The motivators behind destroying borders is none other than George Soros and that old community organizer, Obama, who wants to “FUNDAMENTALLY CHANGE AMERICA.” This fight must be won by those who love America and freedom. Stop the distraction with ICE and get on with our fight to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

Hi_estComnDenomnn
Hi_estComnDenomnn

I like ICE tea.

davidebrwn
davidebrwn

The agency will be greatly benefited by SJW who seek to undermine and sabotage all of the agency's efforts... like this blond.