Friday, September 3, 2010
U-S PLANE RETURNS 66 CONVICTED PINOYS TO R-P
Over 60 Filipinos, some convicted with crimes in the United States, were deported back to the Philippines aboard a chartered jet from Seattle, Washington, officials announced today.
The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) said they were part of 98 Asians repatriated to their home countries for immigration violations.
The group consisted of 66 Filipinos, 18 Indonesians, five Cambodians, four Malaysians, two Japanese and one Vietnamese.
ICE said they were comprised of 79 males and 17 females.
They were locked up earlier in various parts of the US and transferred to the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington for the flight back to Asia. The chartered jet left last Tuesday.
The 66 deportees had been convicted of criminal offenses while living in the US that ranged from homicide to drug trafficking to rape and other sex crimes.
“This year, ICE expects to remove a record number of criminal aliens from the country. The United States welcomes law-abiding immigrants but foreign nationals who violate our laws and commit crimes in our communities should be on notice that ICE is going to use all its resources to find you and send you home,” said ICE Director John Morton.
The Department of Homeland Security, which has supervision over ICE, said a total of 18,820 Filipinos who are illegally living in the US voluntarily returned to the Philippines in 2009 – making them the third biggest group next only to Mexicans and Canadians who went back to their home countries of their own volition.
The DHS deported 681 Filipinos last year – 253 of whom had criminal convictions.
Most of the 128,000 foreigners deported in 2009 were convicted for drug trafficking.
The ICE reported that as of August this year, they have removed more than 350,000 people from the US – nearly half of them because they had criminal convictions.