Law enforcement agencies in six Illinois counties have joined an effort to identify and remove illegal immigrants who commit criminal acts.
Suburban Lake, McHenry and Will Counties are among those joining DuPage and Kane Counties in a program led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE.
The program allows fingerprints submitted by local police to be matched up with FBI criminal histories and Department of Homeland Security immigration records.
Fred Tsao is from the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights. He says this strategy is a cause for concern.
TSAO: The basic concern would be that police would, with this new authority and new power, target otherwise law-abiding immigrant communities and use whatever pretext they can to bring these individuals into the law enforcement system.
But Lake County Sheriff Mark Curran says the identification system is only used when serious offenses occur. He says no one will be deported after minor offenses like traffic stops.