N.C. Bill Would Require Cooperation with ICE

By Jon Feere on January 27, 2023

North Carolina state representatives have introduced a bill requiring local sheriffs to identify criminal illegal aliens in their jails and comply with detainer requests from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The bill is titled, “An Act to Require Compliance with Immigration Detainers and Administrative Warrants and to Require Certain Reports From Local Law Enforcement” (House Bill 10).

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Destin Hall (R-Caldwell), Rep. Brenden Jones (R-Columbus), Rep. Jason Saine (R-Lincoln), and Rep. Carson Smith (R-Pender). As explained by Rep. Hall, “Cooperating with ICE about illegal aliens charged with serious crimes in our state should be common-sense. Their decision to cut off communication with immigration officials only puts more innocent people and officers in harm’s way.”

While this is the first time this bill has been introduced this legislative session, it is not the first time a bill focused on ICE detainers has been introduced. A similar bill passed by the North Carolina legislature was vetoed last year by Governor Roy Cooper (D), who is apparently content allowing criminal aliens to be released back into American communities.

What type of criminal illegal aliens are passing through the jails of North Carolina? While I was serving at ICE under the Trump administration, I had the agency produce monthly reports detailing case studies under the 287(g) program, where sheriffs are trained by ICE officials to identify criminal aliens in state and local custody. Below are official case studies from these reports (which the Biden administration is no longer producing). It is important to understand that although these examples are from two sheriff’s departments, similar criminal aliens are undoubtedly being arrested by all sheriffs in North Carolina, and those sheriffs who do not cooperate with ICE are simply releasing criminal aliens like this back onto the streets instead of handing them off to ICE officers for deportation. The examples include illegal aliens arrested for child rape, methamphetamine trafficking, strong-arm robbery, and assault with a deadly weapon, just to name a few:

Why would North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper not want these individuals turned over to federal immigration authorities? If he cared about public safety, he’d be demanding that all sheriffs in his state cooperate with ICE, honor all detainer requests, and stop shielding criminals who evade our nation’s immigration laws. Perhaps the media should ask the governor about his thoughts on sex assaults against children and drug trafficking in advance of this bill making its way to his desk, which seems highly likely.

The state representatives would be wise to require all sheriffs currently participating in 287(g) to put together reports on the criminal histories of aliens they have identified over the past six years. That data would illustrate the scope of the problem and clearly outline the reason cooperation with ICE is critical.