Renewed Commitment to Criminal Immigration Enforcement, Office of the Attorney General, 2017
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<@ffice nf t~e1\ttarnre~enrntl Ba.sqingtnn,E. QI.20,5.30 April MEMORANDUM FROM: U BJ ECT: 11 , 2017 FOR ALL FEDERAL PRO SECUTORS THE ATTORNEY GENERAL~ R~ Renewed Commitme nt to Crim ina l Immigration Enfo rce ment Charging Practice s It is a high prio rity of the Department of Justice to establis h lawfuln ess in our immig ration system. Whi le dramatic progress has been made at the border in recent month s, muc h remains to be done. It is cr itical that ou r work focus on crimina l cases that wi ll furt her reduce illega lity . Co nsistent and vigo rous enfo rcemen t of key laws wi ll di srupt organizations and deter un lawful co nd uct. I ask that yo u increase you r efforts in this area making the following immigration offenses higher pri orities. Furth er guidance and suppo rt of executi ng thi s pri or ity- including an upd ated memora ndum on c harg ing fo r a ll crimin al cases - w ill be forthcoming. 8 U.S.C. § 1324 (" [b]r inging in and harboring certa in aliens") and related offenses: Eac h District shall co nsider for pro sec ut ion any case invo lving the un lawfu l transportation or harbor ing of aliens, or any o ther co ndu ct prosc ribed pursuant to 8 U.S.C. § 1324. Ifa dete rmin ation mu st be made reg ardi ng use of finit e reso urces, a priority sho uld be given to tho se w ho are brin g ing in three o r more aliens into the U nited Sta tes and those w ho are transportin g or ha rbor ing three or more al iens, as well as offenses whe re the re are aggravati ng circumstances , such as tho se involving se rio us bodil y injur y, physica l or sex ual assau lt, or the deat h of any person. Priority shou ld also be given to pro sec uting any offenses unde r sec tion 1327 ("ai ding or ass ist ing crimin a l aliens to enter ") and sec tion 1328 ("impor tat ion of aliens for immoral purposes "). 8 U.S.C. § 1325 Crilmprope r entry by alien "): Each Di st rict shall conside r for felo ny prosecution und er 8 U.S.C. § 1325 any case whe re a defenda n t ha s two or mo re prio r mi sd emeano r imp roper ent ry co nv ict io ns or o ne o r more prior m isdemeano r imp roper entr y convict ions with aggrava tin g circum stance s, such as a fe lony criminal hi story, ga ng member ship or affil iation , mu ltip le pr ior volun tary returns , pr ior remova l, deportat ion or exclusion, or other aggravating circum stances. Eac h Distr ict shall also co nside r for fe lony pro sec ution und er 8 U.S.C. § 1325 any case whe re a defendant knowing ly ente rs into a marriage for the purpo se of evading any provi sion of the immi gra tion laws . Regarding mi sdemea no r v io latio ns of 8 U.S.C. § 1325, I ask that each U.S. Attorney ' s Office on the Sout hwes t Bo rder ( i.e., Di strict of A rizo na, Di strict of New Mexico , So uthe rn Memora ndum from the At torney Genera l Subject: Renewe d Commitment to Crimin al Immi gration Enfo rcement Page 2 Di strict of Ca liforni a, So uthern District of Tex as, and Wes tern Di strict of Texas) work w ith the U.S. Departm ent of Home land Security and a ny other appropr iate age ncy to deve lop a set of guidelines for pr osec uting such violation s. These guidelines shou ld a im to accomplish the goa l of deterrin g first-tim e improper entrants. Each District shou ld submit its gu ide lines to the Office of the Deput y Atto rney General by Ap ril 24, 20 17. 8 U.S.C. § 1326 ("[r]ee ntry of removed aliens"): Eac h Di strict shall consider prosecu tion of 8 U.S.C. § 1326 for eac h illega l reen trant. Priority, howeve r, mu st be given to defendants who have been conv icted of a n aggrava ted felony, have any pri or crimin al history indicating the defe ndant poses a dange r to publi c safety, have one or more adm inistrative or crimin al immi gra tion violation s, ga ng memb ership or affi liation, or where other aggrava tin g circum stanc es are prese nt. 18 U.S.C. § I 028A (" [a]ggravated identit y theft") & 18 U.S.C . § 1546 ("[Draud and misuse of visas. permit s. and other doc uments" ): Eac h Di strict shall consider, to the ex tent pra cticab le, pr osec ution of bot h agg rava ted identit y theft und er Sec tion 1028A and document fraud und er Sect ion I 546 in re lation to the immi gration offenses listed above. 18 U.S.C . § I I I (" [a]ssa ultin g. resi stin g, or impeding " office rs): Each Di strict shall consider, to the ex tent practicab le, prosec ution of assa ult , res istin g, or impedin g officer s under Section I 11, while they are engag ing in the perform ance of their of ficial du ties in the admini strative and crimin a l immi gration co ntex t. Mor e information on thi s will fo llow. Sente ncing Practice s At the se ntencing phase of eac h federal case, pro sec utors shou ld see k, to the extent prac tica ble, jud icial orders of remo val and a term of superv ised release that is consiste nt with the factors set fort h in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a) . I know many of yo u are already seeking these meas ures from District Co urts, and I ask that yo u co ntinu e thi s eff 0 11 to achieve the result s consistent wi th this guidance . Border Sec urity Coor dinator s In furth erance of these obj ectives , I also dir ect eve ry Di st rict to des ignate a Border Sec urit y Coor din ator ("Coo rdin ator ") by close of business on April 18, 20 17. Th ese Coo rdin ators will be responsible for: • • • • overseeing the inves tigation and prosec ution of the offenses listed above; attendin g trainin g program s with other Coo rdin ators rega rding these offe nses; prov iding lega l adv ice and training to AUSA s rega rdin g these offe nses; and maintainin g and routin ely reportin g pro sec ution stati stics related to these offenses. Eac h Coord inator will be responsible for convenin g mee tings with rep resentatives from the Department of Home land Sec urit y- includin g Immi gra tion and Customs Enfor ce ment, Home land Sec urit y Inves tigations, U.S. Custom s and Borde r Protection, and U nited States Memorandum from the Attorney General Subject: Renewed Commitment to Criminal Immigration Enforcement Page 3 Citizenship and Immigration Services as well as other law enforcement partners deemed necessary to accomp lish this criminal immigration enforceme nt effort. The Coordinator will work with this group to (I) coordinate specific immigration enforcement initiatives, emphasizing those initiatives that will have the greatest impact on public safety; (2) initiate training programs; and (3) facilitate information sharing.