San Diego

ICE Conducts Weeklong Enforcement Surge in San Diego

U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement tells NBC 7 that San Diego County was a part of a weeklong enforcement surge. A spokesperson for ICE said 20 undocumented immigrants with a criminal history were arrested.

This comes as ICE is getting ready for a major immigration sweep on Sunday in 10 U.S. cities. San Diego is not publicly listed as one of the 10 cities where ICE raids will happen.

Local immigrant rights activists said ICE agents are often seen in San Diego County.

"I think fear is a real factor, I think it's our biggest obstacle to be able to provide information about what their rights are," said Pedro Rios from the American Friends Service Committee.

Rios said ICE agents were out in the South Bay and North County on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. So, even though San Diego isn't on the list for large scale raids this weekend, being arrested is a constant concern for many.

"It still doesn't mean people aren't affected by their presence," adds Rios.

Several immigrant rights groups are holding "Know Your Rights" training's. People are given flyers and red cards teaching them about what to do if ICE agents show up at their door or approach them on the street.

"There is definitely a lot of tension in the community but there's also a lot of resistance,” said Rios, “People are tired of always having to be living in fear, so this is why we've seen an increase for ‘know your rights’ training's."

The weeklong enforcement surge concluded Thursday. Of those arrested, 85 percent had prior criminal convictions including drugs, weapons offenses, and hit-and-run charges.

“Targeted operations like this reflect the vital public service that ERO officers do every day to protect the nation, uphold public safety and protect the integrity of our immigration laws and border control,” said San Diego ICE Field Office Director, Gregory Archambeault. “We will continue to conduct similar operations while seeking to ultimately remove criminal aliens with a final order of removal and other immigration fugitives who pose a threat to public safety.”

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