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Immigration Sweep Puts ‘Gang Members’ Behind Bars

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Authorities say a federal operation northwest of Chicago this week netted dozens of undocumented immigrants with ties to street gangs.

Officials say the four-day effort involved police and sheriff’s departments in municipalities from Addison to Belvidere. The detainees include 48 Mexican nationals and a Guatemalan.

Gail Montenegro is a spokesperson for Immigration and Customs Enforcement. She says all but seven of those arrested have criminal histories and all but two have ties to violent groups.

MONTENEGRO: This is a way for ICE to partner with local police departments and use our immigration authorities to target those individuals who are foreign-born members of street gangs.

The operation is part of a four-year-old national effort that’s led to more than 8,900 arrests of immigrants with alleged gang associations.

Immigrant advocates have criticized the effort for sweeping up some people without gang ties.

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