The number of undocumented immigrant arrests rose by roughly one-third in the first weeks of the Trump administration, largely driven by an increase in the number of non-criminals arrested.
Immigrations and Customs Enforcement removal authorities made 21,362 arrests from January 20 to March 13 of this year, including 5,441 non-criminals, according to statistics provided to CNN and first requested by The Washington Post.
While the arrests by ICE under President Donald Trump in the first seven weeks of his administration still lag behind the number arrested under former President Barack Obama in the same timeframe in 2014, the pace of arrests this year do mark an escalation compared to the last two years of the Obama administration, when the Democrat used greater discretion toward undocumented immigrants.
The increase in arrests — including more than double the number of non-criminal indviduals — stands as further evidence of the Trump administration’s priority of enforcing immigration laws more aggressively than the previous administration and giving immigration officials greater authority to go after a wide range of undocumented immigrants.
The more than 21,000 arrested in the beginning of this year is a roughly 33% increase over the same period in 2016 and a roughly 18% increase over the same period in 2015.
But the 5,441 non-criminal undocumented immigrants arrested as part of that total more than doubled the number in either 2015 or 2016.
In the first part of 2014, the Obama administration made 29,238 such arrests, including 7,483 non-criminal undocumented immigrants, which is roughly the same percentage of non-criminal arrests as this year.
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SOURCE: CNN, Tal Kopan