Two NJ Sheriffs Defy Attorney General's Order, Sign Contracts With ICE

Sheriffs in Cape May and Monmouth counties both renewed ICE contracts without the attorney general's permission.

Trenton, NJ – The New Jersey Attorney General’s Office has issued a sharp warning to two sheriff’s offices, after the law enforcement agencies quietly extended their agreements with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) without the attorney general’s approval.

The Cape May County Sheriff’s Office (CMCSO) renewed its agreement with ICE in February, and the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) signed off on a 10-year agreement with ICE in March, the Asbury Park Press reported.

Those renewals allow sheriff’s personnel to alert ICE about potential illegal aliens who are booked into jail, which could lead to the offenders being deported.

On Monday, Division of Criminal Justice Director Veronica Allende issued letters to both departments, alleging that the agreements suggest “that you deliberately declined to disclose this information” to Attorney General Gurbir Grewal’s office, in violation of the “Immigrant Trust Directive.”

In that directive, which was issued in November of 2018, Grewal demanded that law enforcement agencies forgo signing agreements with ICE without his written approval.

Grewal also tasked law enforcement with convincing him that any proposed agreement “was necessary to address a national emergency,” according to Allende’s letters.

“There were good reasons for this requirement,” Allende scolded. “The Immigrant Trust Directive was designed to strengthen trust between New Jersey’s law enforcement officers and the state’s diverse immigrant communities, thereby ensuring that victims and witnesses felt safe reporting crimes.”

Allende argued that the sheriff’s offices’ agreements with ICE “blur” the distinction between state law and federal immigration law.

“These agreements essentially deputize our state’s police officers to operate like ICE agents,” she continued. “This blurring of responsibilities makes it more difficult for residents…to understand how different law enforcement agencies operate, in turn undermining the hard-earned trust that New Jersey’s law enforcement officers have built with the public.”

Allende noted that Grewal has the power to immediately prohibit such agreements, but that he opted to allow the departments to ask for his written permission instead.

“The purpose of this provision was to give the Attorney General greater oversight of [agreements with ICE], thereby ensuring that such agreements were only used when truly necessary to serve compelling law enforcement purposes,” she wrote.

The provision also gave local law enforcement agencies “sufficient time to wind down their reliance on ICE resources before declining to renew these agreements,” Allende added.

She blasted the two departments for failing to abide by Grewal’s directive, and said she was “surprised” to recently learn that their agreements with ICE had been renewed months earlier.

“The fact that no one in your office ever notified the Attorney General’s Office…suggests that you deliberately declined to disclose this information,” Allende railed.

She then placed the departments on notice that, effective Aug. 6, “the Attorney General intends to issue a directive…prohibiting officers…from exercising their law enforcement authority in connection with” the recently renewed agreements with ICE.

Grewal may reconsider if the departments submit required documentation to prove that the agreement “served a valid law enforcement purpose,” Allende added.

New Jersey Assembly Republicans rebuked the attorney general’s office’s letters on Wednesday, the Asbury Park Press reported.

Assemblyman Hal Wirths argued that the threatening letters and enforcement of the Immigrant Trust Directive are placing citizens’ safety at risk.

“It’s completely outrageous that the Murphy administration continues to block law enforcement from protecting their own communities against illegal immigrants who have committed egregious crimes,” Wirths said. “The sheriffs have a duty and right to stop rapists and murders living in New Jersey illegally from seeking asylum in their towns. It’s time our attorney general starts protecting law-abiding citizens.”

Comments (42)
No. 1-29
BlueLM101
BlueLM101

What an idiot. We are talking about the removal of ILLEGAL ALIENS who have either entered the country illegally or overstayed their visas. They have now committed a crime of some type and ICE has been informed of that. That doesn't always mean that they will be deported. It means that ICE will have to have contact with them to figure out their status. But this idiot wants to cuff Police Organizations and Prevent them from upholding the law they swore to uphold.

jinx73
jinx73

kudos to the sheriffs,uphold the law,atty.general is an idiot.kudos to ICE.

jinx73
jinx73

the real word is ILLEGAL,what moron can't understand that ???

ssteve3844
ssteve3844

"WHO" is this guy with the TURBIN on his head?????

UCWayne
UCWayne

I don't think the AG has the legal authority to issue Directives to Constitutionally elected officers such as Sheriffs.

Dutchuncle
Dutchuncle

For THIS action alone this DA should be removed for obstruction of justice

Trueferblue
Trueferblue

There are certain people who should NEVER be allowed to hold a public office in this country. He's the poster child for one of them.

LEO0301
LEO0301

Well, we sure wouldn't want to upset anyone that's in this country "ILLEGALLY" would we?! Who puts these idiots in office?

Gunnersbumpa
Gunnersbumpa

Once again the liberal left tries to control the LEGALLY ELECTED Law Enforcement Officers in New Jersey now. It didn't work, Thank God that those two Sheriffs had the rights of his citizens in mind, NOT THE ILLEGAL ALIENS. Like the New York Sheriff's Association, who voted NOT TO ENFORCE THE ILLEGAL S.A.F.E. ACT, King Andy's overnight unconstitutional gun rights violation. THANK GOD FOR STRONG SHERIFFS

Excalibr4
Excalibr4

So the towelhead is scolding our cops for cooperating with ICE? He's cruising for a bruising!

MrAgent007
MrAgent007

The NJ AG is obviously racist and considering this idiots religion and the inability to uphold public safety, is unfit to be holding any public service positions. It’s obvious why this racist was elected, however unfortunate for the safety and well being of NJ residents. This incompetent AG has no intention of allowing any PD to work in cooperation with ICE. He threw in the written approval verbiage in his asinine directive an attempt to give an appearance that he “could” allow cooperation with ICE. It is so obvious that any written request will never be approved. The Sheriffs did the right thing and hopefully all will follow the same path. These Sheriffs need to answer to the citizens who elected them, not the racist NJ AG!

61mouse
61mouse

They took an oath to uphold the law , that's what their doing . I say the AG take the fucking rag off your head

cspcapt
cspcapt

this has to stop, either do the sworn job you agreed to undertake, or get the hell out!

Sailor
Sailor

Need to get the idiot AG out of there.

Pat1978
Pat1978

"Immigrant" communities? Typical dishonest ambiguity of the ctrl-left.

BuddyA
BuddyA

All of the attorneys in this argument need to remember that the Sheriff has more authority than they do. Look it up, Sheriffs are the highest ranking Law Enforcement Officer (yes DA's are law enforcement officers) in our country and counties.

TBUPS
TBUPS

When I read stuff like this I contact the dumb bunnies by email or a phone call! If the US citizens stood up to these terrorists maybe they would understand they cannot take over our country.

Ladyfluterby
Ladyfluterby

Excuse me but if I remember correctly when you are sworn into office you take an oath that says you will UPHOLD the Constitution of both the state you serve and the United States of America. These liberal social justice warriors who hold these offices DO NOT have the right to direct anyone not to follow the oath of office that we all take. To expect that to happen means that they are requiring every single officer in the state to violate their oath of office. AG Gewel or any AG for that matter does not have the right to direct any LEO to violate their oath and to do so is IMO justification for them to be removed from office immediately.

magnumforc
magnumforc

Figures....you have a rag-head attorney general who hates ICE and probably the police. Kudos to the Sheriff's having the balls to stand up and do what is right for America!

PhillyBlue
PhillyBlue

MCSO and CMCSO are the real MVPs here, I don't think the DA can tell an elected sherriff how to run his office, I'd like to see how this turns out in the courts if it goes that far.

Woobie46
Woobie46

Maybe NJ coming back to our country? I hope so, or we need to wall them off as well!

Yell2017
Yell2017

I agree with deputies. How can AG defy federal government orders? Is 5he AG going to feed, clothe and support these people. Hell no, it is not coming out of his pocket

mach0017
mach0017

The weakest argument I keep hearing over and over is that Democrat talking-point about illegal immigrants being so eager to report crimes in spite of their own illegal presence in the USA.

jimpeel
jimpeel

More and more attorneys general are defying the very laws they are sworn to uphold.

Mrmaverick
Mrmaverick

Why do we, in NJ have a towel headed terrorist, who is NOT an American, as state AG? South Carolina, here I come!

walkintall
walkintall

Blah Blah Fargin' Blah--Bravo to the Sheriffs.

LynnSB
LynnSB

Way to go ~~ Sheriffs in Cape May and Monmouth counties both renewed ICE contracts -- !! why the hell do they need to ask permission ?? They are Following he LAW !!! To bad the Mayors and the Attorney General are P*SSIES and can't do the Same !!!!

finaljustice
finaljustice

Thank you Sheriff's for working with your Federal brothers, all Agencies across the country should do this!

Pack
Pack

Just ignore him and move on.