A prison reform plan supported by both political establishments, the billionaire Koch brothers, the ACLU, and President Trump will make it more difficult to deport criminal foreigners in United States prisons, experts say.
Center for Immigration Studies fellow and former Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) official Dan Cadman writes that the Trump-endorsed First Step Act will make it more difficult for federal officials to deport criminal foreigners from the U.S.
In his analysis, Cadman explains that the prison reform plan allows criminal illegal aliens, immigrants, and nonimmigrants to rack up “good time” credits to receive an early release from prison until their final order of removal is obtained.
The prison reform bill also allows criminal illegal aliens who have repeatedly re-entered the U.S. illegally to participate in programs to reduce their time in prison.
First, until the final order is obtained, they continue accruing that good time. Consider that such proceedings, conducted under the Institutional Hearing Program, are dependent on the availability of immigration judges, plus the time and money to send them on such details. To be cost-effective for BOP, for the judges, and for Homeland Security agents, this means lining up a host of such hearings at a single time. Thus, Institutional Hearing Program (IHP) proceedings may only take place every several months. The language also doesn’t take into account that an alien may seek judicial review of the immigration judge’s order in a federal circuit court of appeal. Even if the appeal is frivolous, until it’s disposed of, the removal order isn’t final and the alien continues to accrue good time credits. [Emphasis added]
Second, consider that the language prohibiting participation in time-reduction programs (which is admittedly technical) only applies to aliens who are being charged as removable for certain crimes. Ironically, those crimes don’t include aliens in prison for some immigration offenses — such as individuals who have repeatedly reentered the United States after having been removed. What sense does it make to incentivize more future illegal reentries by reducing their sentences for participating in “recidivism reduction” programs when they’ve already shown themselves to be recidivists and scofflaws? [Emphasis added]
The prison reform plan, as noted by Cadman, will also allow criminal illegal aliens to be placed in prisons that are within 500 miles of where they were illegally residing and allows deportable criminals to be considered as “low risk” so they can be allowed to stay in home confinement rather than finishing out their sentence in prison.