"ABC News Sends Actor Posing as Security Guard to Challenge AZ Illegal Immigration Law"

Hi Gang:
Just when I thought I had seen it all, I was startled Thursday morning to hear that the ABC Network’s Good Morning America was promoting a segment scheduled to run on that network’s supposed news program, 20/20 on Friday, February 4th in which actors pose as a security guard and others act as apparent illegal aliens from Mexico to see how patrons in a restaurant react to the security guard accosting the Mexican appearing customers in the restaurant!
I have provided you with two accounts about this shameful “news report” this is nothing more, in my view, than a thinly veiled effort to discredit the Arizona immigration law, SB-1070.  The shorter version appeared on Fox Nation and the longer version of the critique of this outrageous “news story” appeared on the Media Research Center.  (The Fox News article provided a link to the more thorough account posted by Media Research Center.)  
What is so incredible is the way that, in my judgement, ABC News played so fast and loose with the truth.  
Here is an example of just how outrageous the story was:
Here are a couple of sentences lifted from the transcript of the discussion I heard on Thursday morning on Good Morning America:

ROBIN ROBERTS: Also this morning, imagine being threatened with deportation, even though you haven’t committed a crime and it’s all because of how you look. John Quinones goes undercover to Arizona’s controversial immigration law.

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: His ultimate, “What would you do?”

Go back and re-read what Robin Roberts said:  “…imagined being threatened with deportation, even though you haven’t committed a crime and it’s all because of how you look…”
ABC hired a make-believe security guard who conducted himself in a despicable fashion who is heard to demand to see identification from patrons of a restaurant challenging them as to their immigration status.  The premise is absolutely bogus!  Under what circumstances would any security guard challenge anyone to show identification in a public place?  
Under what circumstances could a security guard or even a police officer threaten a suspected illegal alien with deportation?
It was apparent that the objective of this exercise in the bizarre was to make it appear that under the Arizona immigration law this sort of challenge would be appropriate while nothing could be further from the truth!
Johnnie Cochran, the late attorney who was part of the O.J. Simpson “Dream Team” that successfully defended him in the murder trial was a highly skilled trial lawyer.  One of his quotes is worth considering today, “If you cannot trust the messenger, you cannot trust the message!”
This ABC article for 20/20 is, in my judgement, irresponsible and calls into question the trustworthiness of the way that ABC portrays news stories.  
The immigration debate is a highly emotional debate.  In the wake of the shootings in Arizona which, incidentally, had nothing to do with so called “hate speech” politicians and other leaders talked about the need to cool the rhetoric.  This is, in fact, something that we should all strive to do.  I find it upsetting that ABC would produce a story that could ignite strong reactions by creating a situation that bears no resemblance to reality.
Most people, if asked about the First Amendment will, almost by reflex, say that the First Amendment is about “Freedom of speech.”  Certainly freedom of speech is an important component of the First Amendment but what is important to consider are five simple words, “the right to peaceably assemble.”  
Certainly I cannot speak for the Founding Fathers, but when you consider that at the time our nation was founded, the only way that discourse could take place was if people met face to face.  There were no technological means to have discussion or discourse back then- so the very first amendment of our Constitution specifically included the right to peaceably assemble.  Peaceful discourse is at the heart of our democracy!  When a news organization twists the truth and spews falsehoods as was done in the ABC News article, grave damage is done.  It is the equivalent of throwing gasoline on a fire that you are supposedly attempting to put out!  There is absolutely no justification for doing this- it is yet another example of an editorial masquerading as a news report and the alleged “journalists” at ABC News should absolutely know better!  This is the equivalent of inciting a riot in the name of “Free Speech!”
The Arizona immigration law does not even permit profiling.  Furthermore any law can be improperly be used by a bad cop to profile.  Stop and consider that a police officer who is determined to engage in racial profiling can use loitering laws, vagrancy laws, motor vehicle laws and a host of other laws to single out individuals because of their appearance.  The immigration laws of our nation and of Arizona do not include any sort of profiling component.  These laws are blind as to race, religions and ethnicity.  The only distinction that our nation’s immigration laws make is between those who are citizens of our nation and those who are not.  Those people who are not citizens are to be referred to by a term the open borders crowd hates- that term is “alien.”  An alien is defined by the Immigration and Nationality Act, as being any person who is not a citizen or national of the United States.
As an INS special agent I have certainly arrested illegal aliens from Mexico and Latin America.  I have also arrested illegal aliens form Canada, Great Britain, Japan, China, Jamaica, Greece, Israel and nearly every other country on the face of our planet.
Other states are beginning to emulate Arizona in seeking to enact immigration laws that are similar to Arizona’s SB 1070.  The state of Indiana is now taking up an immigration law and many other states are following suit.
As you may know, I provided an extensive declaration to the law firm that Arizona’s Governor Jan Brewer retained to defend her state against the lawsuit filed by the United States Department of Justice in an effort to prevent the state of Arizona from doing something that the federal government is apparently unwilling to do- enforce the immigration laws!
Here is the link to the response that was filed by the law firm in federal court:
Here is a list of the Exhibits that were also filed by the law firm:
In reviewing the response you will note that my declaration was cited a number of times.
I am providing you with a copy of my declaration that defends the Arizona Immigration law.  I have attached a copy of that declaration beneath the two news article that you will find below.
Please take the time to read it- you will quickly understand how reasonable SB 1070, especially given the failures of the federal government to secure our nation’s borders and enforce our immigration laws in a meaningful manner. 
If you ultimately come to the conclusion that I am correct about how wrong ABC News was in producing this segment, I would ask that you write to the management at ABC News and to their parent company, Disney, and let them know how you feel!
My goal in writing this and other commentaries is to point out our nations many failings before more victims pay the ultimate price for the incompetence and ineptitude of our government.

The first step in problem-solving is to first identify the problems and vulnerabilities and then devise strategies to overcome them.

If you find yourself to be in agreement with this commentary, I ask that you forward it to as many of your friends and family members as possible and encourage them to do the same.  We need to create a “Bucket Brigade of Truth!”

The practice of good citizenship does not end in the voting booth, it only begins there.

The large scale apathy demonstrated by citizens of this nation has emboldened elected representatives to all but ignore the needs of the average American citizen in a quest for massive campaign funds and the promises of votes to be ostensibly delivered by special interest groups. There is much that we cannot do but there is one thing that We the People absolutely must do- we must stop sitting on the sidelines!


The collective failure of We the People to get involved in make our concerns known to our politicians have nearly made the concerns of the great majority of the citizens of this nation all but irrelevant to the politicians.  

I believe our nation’s is greatly benefited by the rich diversity of our people which is why I could never imagine living anywhere except New York City, arguably the most diverse city in our nation if not, in fact, the world.  However, my idea of diversity most certainly does not include members of MS-13, the Mexican drug cartels or members of other transnational gangs or members of al-Qaeda!

We live in a perilous world and in a perilous era. The survival of our nation and the lives of our citizens hang in the balance.

This is neither a Conservative issue, nor is it a Liberal issue- simply stated, this is most certainly an AMERICAN issue!

You are either part of the solution or you are a part of the problem!

Democracy is not a spectator sport!

Lead, follow or get out of the way!

-michael cutler- 




Please check out my website:

http://nation.foxnews.com/illegal-immigration/2011/02/03/abc-news-sends-actor-posing-security-guard-challenge-az-illegal-immig



Culture

February 03, 2011

ABC News Sends Actor Posing as Security Guard to Challenge AZ Illegal Immigration Law

ABC and reporter John Quinones on Thursday stretched the bounds
of journalism, hiring an actor to play a racist security guard as a way
of testing how the people of Arizona would react to the state’s
“anti-immigration law.”

Previewing the network’s “What Would You Do?” segment for Friday’s
20/20, Quinones explained the undercover concept: “So, I go undercover,
pretending to be someone who is about to be arrested and deported,
simply by the way I look.”

The piece featured a cartoonish “security guard” harassing Mexican
actors in Tucson, Arizona. Presumably, ABC chose a security guard
because impersonating a police officer is illegal. The actor walked into
a restaurant and spewed, “I’m just looking to make sure these guys are
legal citizens. And if they’re not legal citizens, they shouldn’t be
here. They should be deported. They look Mexican.”

 



ABC Sets Up Sting Operation to Find Racism in AZ Immigration Law, Hires Actor to Play a Bigot






By:

Scott Whitlock


Thursday, February 03, 2011 12:45 PM EST

ABC and reporter John Quinones on Thursday stretched the bounds of
journalism, hiring an actor to play a racist security guard as a way of
testing how the people of Arizona would react to the state’s
“anti-immigration law.”

Previewing the network’s “
What Would You Do?
segment for Friday’s 20/20, Quinones explained the undercover concept:
“So, I go undercover, pretending to be someone who is about to be
arrested and deported, simply by the way I look.”

The piece featured a cartoonish “security guard” harassing Mexican
actors in Tucson, Arizona. Presumably, ABC chose a security guard
because impersonating a police officer is illegal. The actor walked into
a restaurant and spewed, “

I’m just looking to make sure these
guys are legal citizens. And if they’re not legal citizens, they
shouldn’t be here. They should be deported. They look Mexican
.” [MP3 audio here.]

Of course, having this man pretend to be a security guard really makes
no sense. (A security guard is going to deport people?) Secondly, for
journalists that often attack conservative sting operations, it’s rather
odd to see ABC manipulate such a scenario


The
Radio, Television and Digital News Association
ethics guide states: “Use surreptitious newsgathering techniques,
including hidden cameras or microphones, only if there is no other way
to obtain stories of significant public importance and only if the
technique is explained to the audience.” Was this the only way ABC could
do such a story?

Previewing the segment, Quinones misstated what Arizona’s law actually
is. He asserted, “So, we took our cameras down to Arizona, where a


controversial, new law would give police the authority to question and
perhaps deport anyone who, in their eyes, appears to be in the U.S.
illegally
.”

This is false.
Byron York of the Washington Examiner explained in an April 26, 2010 column:

Critics have focused on the term “reasonable suspicion” to suggest that
the law would give police the power to pick anyone out of a crowd for
any reason and force them to prove they are in the U.S. legally. Some
foresee mass civil rights violations targeting Hispanics.

What fewer people have noticed is the phrase “lawful contact,” which
defines what must be going on before police even think about checking
immigration status. “That means the officer is already engaged in some
detention of an individual because he’s violated some other law,” says
Kris Kobach, a University of Missouri Kansas City Law School professor
who helped draft the measure. “The most likely context where this law
would come into play is a traffic stop.”

After playing clips of the “security guard” arguing with patrons as he
harassed Mexicans, Quinones lectured, “And what we kept hearing over and
over from folks was that they all knew about the anti-immigration law.
What they didn’t realize until we staged our scenario was how it might
affect innocent people, Latinos, George who are in this country
legally.”

Notice the use of “anti-immigration” rather than anti-illegal immigration.

A previous “What Would You Do?” segment featured “ugly Americans” in Paris. In

January of 2009, overweight and wearing George W. Bush t-shirts, these actors showcased obnoxious behavior in Europe.

Quinones smeared, “They’re the ugly Americans. And for more than a
century, they’ve been fixtures in American literature and film.”

A transcript of the February 3 segment, which aired at 7:44am EST, follows:


7:30am tease

ROBIN ROBERTS: Also this morning, imagine being threatened with
deportation, even though you haven’t committed a crime and it’s all
because of how you look. John Quinones goes undercover to Arizona’s
controversial immigration law.

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: His ultimate, “What would you do?”

7:44

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: We’re going to turn now to our undercover report
from the front lines of the border wars. Arizona’s immigration law
passed last year. It stirred up a lot of controversy. So, John Quinones
went to Tucson to put people’s attitudes to an unusual test. And as I
said earlier, this is sort of an ultimate, “What would you do?”

JOHN
QUINONES: Yes. We took it all the way to Arizona. You know, what does,
George, an illegal immigrant look like? What does he sound like? So, we
took our cameras down to Arizona, where a controversial, new law would
give police the authority to question and perhaps deport anyone who, in
their eyes, appears to be in the U.S. illegally. So, I go undercover,
pretending to be someone who is about to be arrested and deported,
simply by the way I look. [Video of protests.] These people are
protesting for and against Arizona’s new immigration law. We travel 70
miles north, to Tucson, Arizona and install our hidden cameras at this
popular restaurant. BK. Carne Asada and Hot Dogs. This security guard is
an actor hired by What Would You Do? And so are the people he’s
harassing.

WHITE “SECURITY GUARD”: Excuse me. Sorry to interrupt. If I could see some identification. You don’t belong here.

QUINONES: How will patrons react to the guard asking for identification from a Latino man, a Latino family or even me?

WHITE “SECURITY GUARD”: I just want to see some ID and make sure
everything’s okay. Everybody’s like, “Oooh!” It’s no big deal. I’m just
looking to make sure these guys are legal citizens. And if they’re not
legal citizens, they shouldn’t be here. They should be deported. They
look Mexican.

QUINONES: The wheels in this woman’s head are turning. But, wait until you hear her plan.

WHITE WOMAN: He just called for a ride. He’s going to try and get him
deported because he doesn’t have any papers. You gotta get those two
guys out of here.

WHITE “SECURITY GUARD”: All I’m doing is I’m just looking out for everyone’s safety.

WHITE WOMAN: You’re racial profiling. You totally racial profiled!

WHITE “SECURITY GUARD”: Looks like a duck, smells like a duck.

WHITE WOMAN: Looks like [bleeped] is [bleeped].

QUINONES: She then unveils her incredible plot to help me escape.

WHITE
WOMAN: You guys have to get out of here. Do they need to go out the
back door, do you think? Where’s your car? Where’s your car? Where’s
your car? I can drive over there and meet you right there.

QUINONES: Did she really say what we think she said?

WHITE WOMAN: You run out that door. And I’ll bring your car right over there.

QUINONES: I’m a reporter. I’m with ABC News. I’m John Quinones.

WHITE WOMAN: Oh. I know who you are.

QUINONES: You jumped right in. You were going to take us in your car.

WHITE WOMAN: I was actually going to get your car and bring it around and meet you over there.

QUINONES: Why get involved?

WHITE WOMAN: Maybe you have family, mothers, children. And I would feel
bad if you got separated from them and shipped across the other
direction.

QUINONES: It’s amazing how people responded. And what we kept hearing
over and over from folks was that they all knew about the
anti-immigration law. What they didn’t realize until we staged our
scenario was how it might affect innocent people, Latinos, George who
are in this country legally.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Boy, it looks like a fascinating report. Okay, thanks,
John. You can see it tomorrow night on Primetime. What Would You Do?”at
9/8 central.

— Scott Whitlock is a news analyst for the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter.

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DECLARATION OF MICHAEL W. CUTLER

              Michael W. Cutler declares as follows:

1.              The facts set forth below are of my own personal knowledge and, if called as a witness, I could and would testify competently thereto.

2.              Since 2002, I have been a Fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies.  The Center for Immigration Studies is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit, research organization.  As a Fellow, I have provided perspectives based upon my experience with the Immigration and Naturalization Service (“INS”) about the nexus between immigration and national security, the impact of immigration on the criminal justice system, and strategies to combat illegal immigration.  I regularly speak with Special Agents and other employees who are currently employed by the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) (the successor to INS), members of the law enforcement community, members of Congressional sub-committees and their staffers, and other government officials involved in the enforcement and adjudication of federal immigration laws.  I also read a substantial amount of open source material provided by DHS, ICE, Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) and other federal law enforcement agencies.  The federal immigration laws that I enforced as a Senior Special Agent are, with some changes, substantially the same as those laws in place today.      

3.              In February 2002, I retired as a Senior Special Agent for INS.  The INS ceased to exist in 2003 and is now known as U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  Prior to my retirement, I worked for INS for approximately 30 years. 

4.              My career with INS started in 1971 when I entered on duty as an Immigration Inspector assigned to the John F. Kennedy International Airport.  As an Immigration Inspector, my responsibility was to examine documents (such as passports) and to briefly interview passengers to make a determination about their admissibility into the U.S. consistent with federal immigration law.  In essence, I had my eye to the “peephole” to America’s front door.  Effectively, any state with an international airport or a seaport should be considered a border state.        

5.              By 1975, I became a Criminal Investigator (Special Agent) for the INS in New York City.  During that time I rotated through all the squads of the investigations branch of INS.  During this period of time, I often worked closely with other law enforcement agencies including the New York City Police Department.

6.              From 1988 until 1991 I was assigned as the INS representative to the Unified Intelligence Division (“UID”) of the Drug Enforcement Agency (“DEA”) in New York.  In 1991, I was promoted to Senior Special Agent and was assigned to the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (“OCDETF”) wherein I partnered with members of other law enforcement agencies including the FBI, DEA, ATF, U.S. Customs, and local and state police, as well as law enforcement organizations in other countries. 

7.              Since 1997, I have been called by members of both political parties to testify relating to the enforcement or lack of enforcement of immigration laws and deficiencies in the immigration system before both houses of the United States Congress on more than 12 occasions.  The bulk of the testimony that I have provided to Congress has occurred since my retirement from the INS.  On one of these occasions, specifically on February 23, 2003, I provided testimony about sanctuary city policies and their negative impact on enforcement of federal immigration laws and the negative impact on our communities.  At the beginning of this Congressional hearing, Representative John Hostetler, Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Claims, began the hearing by discussing the abduction and brutal assault on a 42 year-old mother of two by several illegal aliens who had extensive arrest histories in New York City – a known “sanctuary city” – which never resulted in any referral to the INS by the New York City Police Department.  On March 11, 2004, I testified before congress about funding for immigration enforcement.  On March 10, 2005, I offered testimony before Congress about interior immigration enforcement resources.  I also provided testimony to the Presidential Commission on the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001.

8.              During my career at INS, I gained a unique perspective by working as an Immigration Inspector, an Examiner (an Adjudications Officer) and as a Special Agent where I worked to enforce immigration laws within the interior of the United States.  Thus, I have firsthand experience of having directly worked as part of, with two of the three elements of, what I refer to as the immigration enforcement tripod:  (1) inspection; (2) border patrol; and (3) interior enforcement.  Each leg of the immigration enforcement tripod plays a critical role in the national security of the U.S. 

9.              Inspection occurs when Aliens enter the U.S. through designated ports of entry.  Upon inspection, a determination is made by an inspector to determine whether there is any reason to preclude an alien from entering the U.S.  Inspectors at designated ports of entry attempt to deny entry to aliens who would not be admissible to the U.S.  The following is a partial list of reasons why an Immigration Inspector will not permit an alien to enter the U.S.:  (1) the alien has certain communicable diseases of public health significance; (2) the alien has a physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder may pose a threat to the safety of others; (3) it is determined that the alien is a drug abuser or addict; (4) the alien has committed a crime involving moral turpitude; (5) the alien has committed a crime involving  controlled substances; (6) the alien has been convicted of two crimes which resulted in aggregate sentences of five years or more; (7) the alien has been known to be an illicit trafficker in controlled substances; (8) the alien is coming to the U.S. to engage in prostitution or has engaged in prostitution within the last 10 years; (9) aliens who have committed serious crimes but claimed immunity to avoid prosecution; (10) foreign government officials who have violated U.S. laws relating to religious freedom; (11) the alien has engaged in trafficking in persons; (12) the alien has engaged in money laundering; (14) the alien is entering the country to engage in espionage or any unlawful activity; (15) the alien has engaged in terrorist activities, is planning to engage in terrorist activities or is a representative of a terrorist organization; (16) the alien is a known war criminal; (17) the alien has been previously deported and lacks proper authority to reenter; and (18) the alien is found to be in possession of fraudulent documents.  

10.           Border Patrol is a federal law enforcement agency that is now part of US Customs and Border Protection.  Border Patrol is tasked with deterring, detecting, and interdicting (apprehending) illegal aliens who enter or attempt to enter the U.S. other than through designated ports of entry.

11.           Interior enforcement, consistent with its moniker, is enforcement of immigration laws within the borders of the U.S. and falls under the purview of ICE Special Agents.  Based upon my 30 years of experience for the INS as an Immigration Inspector, a Special Agent, and as a Senior Special Agent, I believe that the interior enforcement program was and continues to be terribly under-staffed and, in general, neglected.

12.           While the actual number of ICE Special Agents is classified, most estimates by what I consider to be reputable data sources put the number of ICE Special Agents at approximately 6,000 for the entire U.S.  A substantial portion of these agents are tasked with enforcement of U.S. Customs law and not immigration enforcement.  The President recently estimated the number of illegal aliens at 11,000,000 – other estimates are significantly higher.  Government estimates place the number of illegal aliens who have entered through ports of entry but violated their terms of admission, at 4,500,000.  According to a recent DHS report, it is estimated that there are only 272 ICE employees trying to track down these 4,500,000 immigration law violators.  In any event, there are no more than 6,000 ICE agents responsible for the interior enforcement of federal immigration laws for the more than 11,000,000 illegal aliens that are in the United States.  Thus, ICE cannot be successful in enforcing federal immigration law without the assistance of local law enforcement.       

13.           Based on any estimate for the number of illegal aliens living in the U.S., it cannot be disputed that the federal government has failed to secure the borders of the U.S or to deter the continuing entry of illegal aliens.       

14.           The federal government’s failure to secure the border, combined with the federal government’s decision not to engage in substantial interior enforcement, has created an immigration policy that effectively creates a “finish line” at the border.

15.           In other words, aliens are incentivized to make it to the border whether through lawful means or unlawful means because once an alien crosses the border there is little chance of detection in the interior of the country and even less chance of removal (deportation).

16.           The reduced chance of detection and removal creates an environment where aliens who enter the U.S. through lawful means at designated ports of entry face little or no penalty for staying in the U.S. after their permission to remain expires.  Once an alien’s permission to remain in the U.S. expires, an alien is unlawfully present in the U.S.  Aliens who were lawfully admitted become unlawfully present in the U.S. when they violate the terms of their admission into the U.S.  Examples include aliens who: (1) remain in the U.S. beyond their authorized period of admission; (2) accept unauthorized employment; and/or (3) are convicted of crimes.

17.           Alien’s previously lawfully admitted who become unlawfully present represent a risk to the security of the U.S. because they are able to establish themselves into a community and hide in plain sight.      

18.           A second way for aliens to get past the finish line (the border) and move to the interior of the U.S. to is to circumvent designated ports of entry.  By definition, anyone who enters the U.S. by circumventing designated ports of entry has entered the country unlawfully. 

19.           National security is at risk when someone circumvents designated ports of entry because the U.S. does not have any information about the identity of those persons who have entered our country or any record of their entry into our country or their presence thereafter.  Nor does the U.S. have any information about the actual number of persons who have circumvented designated ports of entry.  Most critically, the U.S. does not have information whether the person who has circumvented inspection is carrying a communicable disease, is a war criminal, is wanted in another country or is a known felon, a member of a transnational gang or cartel, or whether the alien is actually a terrorist who seeks to harm the U.S. 

20.           In my experience as a Special Agent who enforced immigration laws in the interior of the U.S., I am familiar with the various rationale for circumventing inspection at the border. 

21.           Some percentage of those persons who circumvent designated ports of entry come to the U.S. simply to work (albeit unlawfully) in an attempt to secure a better life than might be available to them in their home country.  

22.           Some percentage of those persons who circumvent designated ports of entry come to the U.S. to avoid detection and subsequent prosecution for crimes that they have committed in their home country.  The U.S., with its porous border and lack of interior immigration enforcement, becomes a haven for these aliens to hide.

23.           Some percentage of those persons who circumvent designated ports of entry come to the U.S. to blend into our communities with the plan of hiding in plain sight with the eventual goal of causing harm to the U.S. and its citizens.

24.           Some percentage of those persons who circumvent designated ports of entry travel back and forth between the U.S. and a border country to import drugs, weapons, to engage in human smuggling or trafficking, and to evade U.S. law enforcement agencies. 

25.           Aliens that have entered the U.S. unlawfully, often become the potential clients of other criminal enterprises that prey upon illegal aliens through the sale of forged or altered identity documents, fraudulent schemes to ensure the ability to stay in the U.S., and further exploitation by the criminal element.

26.           The circumvention of designated ports of entry creates a tremendous problem for the federal government because ICE does not have sufficient personnel to enforce federal immigration laws consistent with its stated objectives by solely relying on Special Agents stationed in the field.  Moreover, because of ICE’s inability to enforce federal immigration laws from within the interior of the U.S., aliens intent on entering the U.S. are emboldened and encouraged that they will ultimately succeed in entering the U.S. even if they are interdicted by border patrol on a number of occasions.  From my interviews with aliens that I have arrested or otherwise detained, I have learned that U.S. immigration policies have contributed to aliens adopting the view that they only need to keep trying to circumvent the border one time more than they are caught to be successful at entering the U.S.   

27.           During my time as an INS Special Agent, INS would prioritize its enforcement efforts in an attempt to seek removal for those persons most likely to cause harm to the U.S.  The same is true today now that immigration enforcement falls under the direction of DHS and more specifically, ICE.  In fact, I personally worked with Senator Al D’Amato to prioritize criminal aliens, distinguish aliens by subjecting such criminal aliens to enhanced penalties who reentered the country after a formal order of removal after a criminal conviction, and to hold removal proceedings inside the jail to expedite the adjudication of removal proceedings. 

28.           I am aware that ICE, on June 30, 2010, posted a memorandum outlining ICE’s enforcement priorities for the (world to see).  Setting aside the peculiar timing and tone of the memorandum, ICE has identified its highest enforcement priorities as (1) national security; (2) public safety; and (3) border security.

29.           As a Special Agent for more than 26 years, I have come to the conclusion that ICE must rely on local law enforcement to even attempt to work towards its highest enforcement priorities because ICE Special Agents only come into contact with a small portion of the alien population that has entered the U.S. or that remains in the U.S. unlawfully. 

30.           Local law enforcement, on the other hand, has regular contact with members of the public including aliens.  These daily contacts by local law enforcement represent a critical tool in assisting ICE with its highest enforcement priorities because local law enforcement can assist ICE in the identification of those aliens who are unlawfully present in the U.S.

31.           Specifically, each time a local law enforcement officer has contact with a person, whether a U.S. citizen, a lawful alien or an unlawful alien, the officer will almost always try and identify the person to make sure there are no outstanding criminal or administrative warrants that would cause the local law enforcement officer to take the person into custody to protect the safety of officers and the community.  Further, as it relates to ICE’s highest enforcement priorities, local law enforcement plays a critical role in identifying aliens so that ICE can make a determination about whether or not ICE should seek to lodge a detainer and or to take other appropriate actions to effect the removal of the alien. 

32.           I can think of no situation where ICE would not want a local law enforcement officer to assist in the identification of someone unlawfully present in the U.S.  These contacts can result in improved national security because, at least from time to time, some of these aliens identified by local law enforcement may be significant threats to the U.S. and wanted by ICE and/or other federal authorities.  It is important to note that some of the 9/11 terrorists had interaction with police officers prior to engaging in the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history.  On other occasions, ICE may in fact determine that an alien identified by local law enforcement is not an enforcement priority under ICE’s current prioritization. 

33.           Local law enforcement can also play a critical role in assisting ICE in enforcing federal immigration laws by creating a deterrent because of its ability to inquire into the immigration status when reasonable suspicion exists that someone is unlawfully present in the U.S.  This deterrence can assist in removing some of the pressure on the border.

34.           I am also aware that some cities become sanctuaries to aliens unlawfully present through the creation of policies that prevent local law enforcement officers from inquiring into an alien’s immigration status even when the officer has reasonable suspicion that an alien is unlawfully present in the U.S.  These cities are sometimes referred to as “sanctuary cities.”

35.           The creation of sanctuary cities actually hurts ICE in its efforts to conduct its highest enforcement priorities because it results in less identification of potentially dangerous unlawful aliens by local police officers.  In other words, when ICE is left to enforce federal immigrations laws on its own, its efforts are substantially limited.  On the other hand, permitting local law enforcement to inquire into an alien’s immigration status when they have already been stopped, detained, or arrested will actually assist ICE to meet its highest priorities as local law enforcement assists ICE in becoming aware of those aliens who would be considered a high priority for removal or other appropriate action.  Moreover, an argument could certainly be made that cities that create sanctuary policies are actually in violation of 8 U.S.C. § 1324 which creates criminal penalties for “knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien has come to, entered, or remains in the United States in violation of law, conceals, harbors, or shields from detection, or attempts to conceal, harbor, or shield from detection, such alien in any place, including any building or any means of transportation” (8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(A)(iii)) or “encourage[ing] or induc[ing] an alien to come to, enter, or reside in the United States, knowing or in reckless disregard of that fact that such coming to, entry, or residence is or will be in violation of law.”  8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(iv); see also 8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(v)(II) (“aids or abets the commission of any of the preceding acts”).  In other words, if the federal government was interested in enforcing federal immigration law it would be actively working to end sanctuary city policies throughout the U.S.

36.           I am personally familiar with one example in which a city’s sanctuary policy prevented local law enforcement officers from assisting in the enforcement of federal immigration law leading to the death of a police officer.

37.           Specifically, in 1986, I personally escorted Renaldo Rayside to the airport after an immigration judge entered an order of removal to deport Mr. Rayside to Panama due to his conviction on several drug charges.

38.           Within two years, Mr. Rayside had returned to the U.S. via unknown means.  Once inside the country, according to published newspaper accounts, Mr. Rayside was charged at least twice with resisting arrest by New York City police officers.  But New York City had policies in place that prevented city law enforcement officers from contacting INS even when they had reasonable suspicion that a person in their custody was unlawfully present in the U.S.

39.           New York City’s sanctuary policies precluded its officers from contacting INS to inquire about Mr. Rayside’s immigration status.  Had INS been contacted, INS would have detained Mr. Rayside based upon his criminal conduct and based upon his presence in the U.S. despite having been previously removed.  Mr. Rayside would have been either imprisoned and prosecuted for reentering the U.S., or would have been deported. 

40.           On March 3, 1989, as a result of New York City’s sanctuary policies, Mr. Rayside was still present and at-large in the U.S. (albeit unlawfully) when he was stopped for questioning by Officer Robert E. Machate.  On this day, Mr. Rayside wrestled Officer Machate’s gun from him and used it to shoot him through the back.  Officer Machate died as a result of the gunshot wound.

41.           New York City’s sanctuary city policies during this time period, or any sanctuary policy that prevents local law enforcement from contacting federal immigration authorities for that matter, are inconsistent with ICE’s highest priorities listed in its June 30, 2010 memorandum.  In other words, ICE’s highest priorities are more likely to be met when local law enforcement is permitted to contact ICE when contact is made with a potentially dangerous illegal alien.  Sanctuary city policies also have a potential harmful effect on officer safety and the safety of the community.

42.           Local law enforcement is in the unique position of being able to assist ICE to meet their highest priority of removing the most dangerous persons from the U.S. as it simultaneously enforces state or federal law in other areas.  As an example, persons are regularly stopped by local law enforcement for minor traffic violations but – once the person is identified – the minor traffic violation can result in the arrest of someone wanted for a violent crime or some other significant felony.  It is simply nonsensical for ICE to suggest that it can more appropriately enforce its highest priorities if local law enforcement ignores a person’s immigration status. 

43.           Just as local law enforcement is in a unique position of being able to assist ICE to meet their highest priority of removing the most dangerous persons from the U.S., ICE stands in a unique position to assist local law enforcement.  In my experience as a Special Agent, I was often asked by local law enforcement to provide testimony at bail hearings to provide INS’ perspective about the flight risk of a particular alien.  In fact, INS’ (and now ICE’s) files can be a treasure trove of information about an alien’s lack of ties to the community, failures to appear for prior hearings, or their record of using false or non-existent identities or addresses.                         

44.           As someone concerned about the security of the U.S. border, I have read Senate Bill 1070.  Based upon my 30 years of experience enforcing federal immigration laws, Senate Bill 1070 does not seek to enforce federal immigration laws beyond what is permitted by the Immigration and Nationality Act and its amendments.  Rather, Senate Bill 1070 prevents the creation of sanctuary cities, a detriment to assisting ICE in meeting its highest enforcement priorities, and provides local law enforcement with the ability to assist ICE in meeting ICE’s stated objectives as well as the objectives of local and state police officers.

45.           Senate Bill 1070 leaves actual enforcement, including the setting of enforcement priorities, in the hands of DHS and ICE who are charged with enforcing federal immigration laws.  Also, it is important to note that the actual removal of aliens falls under the exclusive control of ICE and Senate Bill 1070 has no impact on this authority. 

46.           As a former Special Agent, I believe that being able to have the assistance of local law enforcement is critical in helping ICE to remove the most dangerous unlawful aliens from the U.S. in order to protect our nation’s security, protect the safety of the public, and to secure our border.  Cooperation between local and state law enforcement, CBP, and ICE creates a synergy that will improve the results of all agencies involved and, as a result, will improve national security and community safety.                                  

I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct.

DATED ______________ .

 

New York.

            By  

Michael W. Cutler

 

 

 

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