Philadelphia did cooperate with ICE, despite mayor's order, but won't anymore

The city's actions came out during a federal court hearing this week.

Pat Loeb
May 11, 2018 - 4:25 pm
Immigration
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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- It turns out the City of Philadelphia has informed immigration authorities when certain undocumented felons were being released, despite the mayor's executive order stating that it will only hold prisoners if federal agents obtain a judicial warrant.

The city's actions came out during a federal court hearing this week.

The disclosure came during testimony from Police Commissioner Richard Ross in the lawsuit the city filed against federal justice officials, after they tried to take back a grant on the grounds that the city's immigration policy violates federal law. The justice department's attorney asked if Ross was aware that the city had informed Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, about the release of certain felons and Ross said he was.

City spokesman Mike Dunn confirms there were "a handful of cases," last year, concerning "particularly egregious crimes." But, he says, the city has stopped working with ICE because the agency has become, in his words, "extremely aggressive and repressive," eroding trust in government and law enforcement. "We are not," he says, "going to do anything to deepen that distrust."