Send in prosecutors to take the cases to court.
Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors and at least one federal judge appear to not be executing Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ policy of zero tolerance for illegal border crossers.
“If you cross the border unlawfully, then we will prosecute you — it’s that simple. If you smuggle illegal aliens across our border, we will prosecute you,” Sessions said earlier this month. While that sounds absolute in theory, in practice it appears to be quite different, the Washington Times reports.
“It’s a far cry from zero tolerance,” National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) President Brandon Judd told the Times. Judd said that 13 illegal immigrants arrested by San Diego Sector agents on Friday were not prosecuted after the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of California declined prosecution.
Border Patrol agents told the NBPC president that prosecutors are picking and choosing which cases to prosecute, claiming they do not have enough resources. Agents said a good number of them are being turned down.
One federal judge, Gonzalo P. Curiel, allegedly released migrants without any bond payment. President Donald Trump and his administration have been at odds with Judge Curiel on multiple occasions.
DOJ prosecutors asked that Marbel Yaneth Ramirez-Raudales, one of the caravan migrants arrested in the San Diego Sector, be held on a bond of $10,000, the Times reported. However, Judge Curiel released him on a signature and unsecured bond promise. The migrant was released to the custody of immigration enforcement officials.
The pledge of zero tolerance by Attorney General Sessions appears to be executed on a selective basis depending on location. As an example, Breitbart Texas reported about two illegal immigrants arrested in the Laredo Sector who claimed to be part of the “migrant caravan” after illegally crossing the border.
The Times reported that the two illegal immigrants were prosecuted for illegal entry and the judge sentenced them to 5 days in jail after a plea bargain agreement with prosecutors. In other places, prosecutors say they are not interested in the cases, the article states.