ARLINGTON, Va. (FOX 5 DC) - Police departments in Northern Virginia are weighing in after President Donald Trump tweeted that the mass deportation of illegal immigrants would begin next week.
The president tweeted on Monday, “Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States. They will be removed as fast as they come in. Mexico, using their strong immigration laws, is doing a very good job of stopping people long before they get to our Southern Border. Guatemala is getting ready to sign a Safe-Third Agreement. The only ones who won’t do anything are the Democrats in Congress. They must vote to get rid of the loopholes, and fix asylum! If so, Border Crisis will end quickly!”
....long before they get to our Southern Border. Guatemala is getting ready to sign a Safe-Third Agreement. The only ones who won’t do anything are the Democrats in Congress. They must vote to get rid of the loopholes, and fix asylum! If so, Border Crisis will end quickly!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 18, 2019
The Arlington County Police Department called the plan “political” and said they have no intention on working with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to fulfill Trump’s mass deportation plan. The Fairfax County Police Department said it doesn’t participate with ICE on civil enforcement either.
While Fairfax and Arlington counties said they would not participate with ICE on a mass deportation plan, the director of the Northern Virginia Gang Task Force said the move could curb MS-13 activity in the DC region.
“One would assume that more of them will be deported. Of course, our focus is on documented gang members,” Northern Virginia Gang Task Force Director Jay Lanham said. “We’ve seen a rise in gang activity here this spring and there have been a few homicides in this region. Our focus and our concerns are to continue our investigation into these gang members.”
Even so, Lanham said there are still unanswered questions including who is going to be deported and how do they know they’re gang members?
ICE sent the following statement to FOX 5 following the president’s tweet:
“The border crisis doesn’t start and stop at the border, which is why ICE will continue to conduct interior enforcement without exemption for those who are in violation of federal immigration law. This includes routine targeted enforcement operations, criminals, individuals subject to removal orders, and worksite enforcement.”
ICE told FOX 5 that the White House would have to further explain or answer any questions about the deportation plan specifics and strategy.
The Prince William County Police Department declined to comment on the president’s tweet.