PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Federal Immigration agents rounded up more than 100 people in the Philadelphia area in the last four days, as part of a national crackdown on illegal immigrants in sanctuary cities.
Nationally, 450 people were taken into custody in ten cities but the Philadelphia area was by far the largest target with nearly a quarter of the arrests.
A spokesman says 35 of the 107 people arrested had criminal convictions, 18 have pending criminal charges, 15 had been previously deported and re-entered illegally and six were fugitives with final removal orders from a judge.
He says privacy restrictions prevent identifying any of those arrested but the Agency singles out a Dominican who they say was in Philadelphia police custody but because of the city’s policy of not honoring Agency detainers– he was released before their agents could detain him.
Mayor Kenney denounced the operation as sowing seeds of distrust between immigrants and police, though police were not involved in the operation.
Sundrop Carter of the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition says that makes the city less safe.
“Ripping apart families and making people feel unsafe in their homes is bad for everybody, not just those who are picked up,” said Carter.