'Out of touch on immigration'

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Representative Mark Pocan, D-Wis., favors abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), even though just 25 percent of voters agree.

If ICE were abolished, minority communities would be disproportionately harmed, according to Matthew Albence, the agency's director.

"Minority communities are the primary victims now, because these individuals are involved in gang activity and other criminal activity and generally they commit those crimes against those in the same communities in which they reside," Albence said.

ICE was established after terrorists involved in the 2001 attacks exploited U.S. immigration rules and violated the terms of their visas.

In 2017, 127,000 illegal immigrants were charged or convicted of crimes inside the United States, including over 1,800 homicides, 48,000 assaults, and 4,818 gang-related arrests. ICE apprehended over 76,000 people for dangerous drug offenses, and seized a million pounds of narcotics.

ICE also combats the smuggling of people, drugs, money, counterfeit merchandise, and weapons into the United States. This includes confronting sexual trafficking, and fighting child pornography. ICE made more than 11,000 arrests related to weapon offenses infiscal year 2017.

ICE targets overseas recruiters and organizations, fraudulent document providers, and transportation and employment networks that benefit from human smuggling operations. During fiscal 2017, ICE made more than 5,000 arrests related to sexual assaults and more than 2,000 related to kidnapping.

Although there are many law-abiding immigrants here, Pocan is out of touch with the reality that our laws must be enforced to protect us from the criminals ICE is apprehending.

Fran Hanus

Milton

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