by Jason Hopkins
A special task force of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) located and arrested an illegal alien wanted in his home country of El Salvador for allegedly raping a child.
ICE’s Fugitive Alien Removal (FAR) Task Force arrested Jose Luis Rodriguez-Vasquez in the Los Angeles area on April 8 for immigration violations, according to a Thursday press release by the agency. Not only was Rodriguez-Vasquez living unlawfully in the United States, but the Salvadoran national is also wanted in his home country under child rape charges.
Rodriguez-Vasquez remains in ICE custody and is undergoing deportation proceedings.
The agency commended the arresting officers at a time when much of the country is under coronavirus lockdown, prompting ICE to scale back its enforcement efforts.
“Our incredible and dedicated FAR officers continue to exercise vigilance during this chaotic time to make arrests that simply put, ensure the safety and security of our communities,” ICE’s Los Angeles Field Office Director Dave Marin said in a Thursday statement.
He continued: “The arrest and removal of these high-profile criminal aliens sends a strong and clear message that our nation will not allow itself to be used as a refuge for the violent criminals of other countries. Our officers work closely with partner federal law enforcement and foreign agencies to bring these violators to justice.”
The arrest marked the latest high-profile apprehension by the FAR Task Force, a group of ICE officials who must carry an extensive law enforcement background.
Los Angeles FAR officers notched 67 “high-profile” arrests in 2019 alone. Since 2020 began, this special task force has made more than 40 arrests — including a 38-year-old Salvadoran citizen wanted for aggravated homicide; and a 63-year-old Mexican citizen wanted for burglary, sexual assault and carnal abuse.
Cooperation from local jurisdictions helps FAR’s mission to arrest and deport dangerous criminals from the community, Marin added. However, it’s not clear how much cooperation FAR is receiving in California, one of the most notorious sanctuary states in the country.
Jerry Brown, the previous governor of California, signed the California Values Act in October 2017. The bill, among many things, bans state and local agencies from honoring ICE detainer requests — requests the agency makes when an illegal alien is placed into local custody for an unrelated crime. Such holds allow an ICE agent to arrive and make an apprehension in a safe and secure manner.
This policy has been compounded by some of the state’s most populous cities. The mayor of Los Angeles and the sheriff of San Francisco, for example, have previously declared that they will not cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
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Jason Hopkins is a reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation.