ICE officers who endorsed President Trump in 2016 now say he has failed to follow through on his get-tough promises, saying catch-and-release of immigrants living illegally in the U.S. is not only still happening, but has gone into “overdrive.”
Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers say they’re being roped into such mundane tasks as opening the doors on vans to release immigrants already caught by Border Patrol agents. That’s dragging the officers from their usual duties of nabbing fugitives, or scouring local prisons and jails for immigrant criminals who lived illegally in the U.S. ready to be deported.
The shell game is all the more “ridiculous,” the officers said, because Border Patrol agents could fill out paperwork and open the doors themselves, but the agency’s leaders don’t want to be part of catch-and-release.
“Hundreds of man hours are wasted each day at a time of crisis on the border,” the leaders of the National ICE Council, the union that represents ICE officers, said in a letter sent directly to Mr. Trump on Monday.