(MASSACHUSETTS) A Boston TV station has discovered that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been flying planeloads of illegal immigrants to Massachusetts over the past couple of weeks.
ICE officials confirmed to Fox 25 on Friday that at least six commercial, agency-owned charter flights have transported detainees to the Boston area. The agency told the station that moving detainees from the southern borders to other areas of the country is routine.
“There are a number of concerns,” said Jessica Vaughn spokesperson for the Center for Immigration Studies, adding that the crisis at the border is distracting U.S. agencies from their regular mission to deport illegal immigrants convicted of crimes.
Recent reports found that in May, ICE released 36,000 immigrants with criminal convictions into communities for a number of reasons, Vaughn said.
“This influx of people is a direct result of recent policies,” she said. “According to border patrol’s own intelligence, what the immigrants are telling them, is that they’re coming now because there’s a new law that gives them permission to stay.”
When Fox 25 questioned Massachusetts Gov. Duval Patrick about the flights, he said he was just hearing about the situation.
“I don’t know anything about it,” Patrick said.
“How does the governor not know anything about this?” the news anchor asked. (read more)