Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested 171 noncitizens in its latest enforcement crackdown

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Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested 171 unauthorized citizens with a variety of criminal records ranging from murder, homicide or child abuse as part of a recent enforcement sweep that included 25 major cities, the agency announced Thursday.

“These were very bad individuals and we wanted to get them off the streets,” ICE Acting Director Patrick J. Leichleitner told reporters Thursday.

Leichleitner said the group arrested included more than 100 sex offenders. Among the people arrested by ICE are alleged criminals who will now undergo immigration proceedings for deportation.

PHOTO: In this file photo dated September 25, 2019, an ICE agent badge is seen, in Revere, Massachusetts.

In this file photo dated September 25, 2019, an ICE agent badge is seen, in Revere, Massachusetts.

Matt Stone/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images, FILE

The Biden administration has been criticized by Republicans for changing immigration enforcement priorities. Under the new structure, crossing the border illegally is not enough to make a noncitizen a top priority for deportation. Instead, ICE focused on more recent border crossers and those with criminal records.

“We are an intelligence-led organization and we will target these individuals based on our priorities,” Leichleitner said.

ICE’s Chief of Enforcement and Removal Operations, Daniel Pepple, said the agency is also working to leverage new technology to make it easier for immigrants apprehended at the border to check in and move through the immigration adjudication process.

“Depending on the cities you go to, you know, like New York City and Miami, there’s – there’s a lot of people, so it’s taken a while to actually get people scheduled but what we’re doing is we’re leveraging technology.” The Bible said.

Last year, ICE arrested 73,822 noncitizens with criminal records, according to the agency. But ICE officials say the agency needs more resources to continue its work targeting the full range of noncitizen criminals.

This article originally appeared on abcnews.go.com

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