CENTRAL, Texas — 6 News contacted former ICE Deportation Officer Edwardo Rodriguez to get his take on the ICE operations, widely called raids, which happened over the weekend. Rodriguez runs the Legal Intelligence Agency, which consults the private sector businesses on policy and procedure for immigration related issues.
Moore: President Trump says that it’s the "criminal" immigrants ICE is going after, but rallies are claiming that families are being torn apart. Who is really being targeted here?
Rodriguez: Out of the criminal (alien category), 20 to maybe as high as 40 percent.
Moore: The other 80 to 60 percent, who is that?
Rodriguez: That's going to be the individuals that came in illegally, turned themselves in, or were arrested, and had the opportunity to go to court, and were assigned a court date, but never showed up to court.
Rodriguez said the only people being removed are those who already have “orders of removal” issued from an immigration court. He said ICE could detain other individuals during the raid, but those individuals would have to go through their own legal process before being deported.
Moore: Could these raids be violent, and is the operation a raid in the first place?
Rodriquez: It’s not really a raid per say… In this spot, these are individuals who have already been identified.”
Rodriquez said that the operations work more like warrant roundups and are not supposed to be violent.
Moore: What rights do these non-citizens have and do they lose those rights after being picked up on an order of removal?
Rodriguez: An undocumented individual has five basic rights. The right to seek an attorney, the right to know what the charges are, the right to speak to a consul representative of their country, the right to proper medical attention, and the right to be housed safety and of course have food. Those are the only basic five rights that they have. They do not have the right to remain silent? Why? They are not citizens.They are not subject to the 14th amendment. It is up to the individual in an administrative process to be able to prove that they have the right to be here. If he can’t, he will be removed.
Moore: Can the non-citizen assert any of those rights after being picked up by ICE?
Rodriquez: They maintain the initial five rights, and they still have other administrative rights. They have the right to ask for review, they have the right to reopen the case, they have a right to submit additional information that we didn’t have prior. Those things they can do, post arrest from this particular warrant.
Rodriguez said the non-citizen would have to ask the deportation officer that took them into custody, or ask the the court, to re-open the case or look at new evidence.
Moore: Is this a special operation or is it just a typical one with more publicity?
Rodriguez: Fugitive operations officers go out in teams and make these arrests every single day.
Moore: Why would the Trump administration announce the one this weekend?
Rodriguez: You will have residual removals, unofficial removals, occur, when it is more public. Those who have been here for six months and hear what is going on may think it's a good idea to just leave.
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