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Expert: Immigration Enforcement Targets 'Low-Hanging Fruit' Under Trump

August 02, 2017 (1 min read)

John Bacon, USA Today, Aug. 1, 2017 - "An Ohio mother of four who has lived in the U.S. for 17 years faced deportation Tuesday, nine days after a routine traffic stop that led authorities to discover her undocumented status.  Beatriz Morelos Casillas, 37, her husband and their children live in Painesville, 30 miles northeast of Cleveland.  Casillas was stopped on her way home from her factory job, then arrested for driving without a license and immediately taken into custody.  Never released, she was scheduled to be deported to the Texas border state of Tamaulipas — one of the most dangerous places in Mexico.  The kids, ages 4 to 12, are U.S. citizens and never have been out of the United States, her husband, Jose DeJesus, said.

... Stephen Yale-Loehr, who teaches immigration law at Cornell Law School, says cases like Casillas' are becoming more prevalent.  He noted that while the Obama administration concentrated on undocumented immigrants who committed crimes, the Trump administration has essentially determined that anyone who is here illegally is equally at risk of being found and deported.  A backlog in court hearings has slowed the deportation process.  Casillas, however, was deported once before in 2001, limiting her rights to fight the order.  "This is low-hanging fruit for immigration authorities," Yale-Loehr said.  "It's relatively easy to focus on people who have been through the process before because they can be deported expeditiously without a hearing." "