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Dept. of Homeland Security lost track of 177,000 migrants over 17-month period, internal watchdog says

Migrants who've crossed the border wait to be taken for processing in Yuma, Arizona, May 19, 2022. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

The Department of Homeland Security's internal watchdog said the agency lost track of 177,000 migrants over a 17-month period beginning in 2021 and ending in 2022, NBC News reported.

What are the details?

A new report from the DHS Office of Inspector General said the DHS is limited in its ability to track migrants once they're released inside the United States, NBC News said.

For more than 1 million migrants released from March 2021 to August 2022, 177,000 address records were either blank or contained nonexistent or nonresidential locations, the news network added.

NBC News added that some of the locations used more than 50 times during a six-month period included a restaurant in Maryland, a bus station in Georgia, a car dealership in New Jersey, and a church in Illinois.

More from the news network:

Without a real address, DHS had no way to track the whereabouts of migrants or to send them notifications about their pending asylum claims and court dates. If they don’t file an asylum claim with immigration courts within a year of arrival, they could miss the opportunity to seek legal residency and work authorization.

The inspector general’s report said valid addresses are needed for Immigration and Customs Enforcement to locate and deport migrants who are illegally in the country.

“ICE must be able to locate migrants to enforce immigration laws, including to arrest or remove individuals who are considered potential threats to national security,” the report said, according to NBC News. “The notable percentage of missing, invalid for delivery or duplicate addresses on file means DHS may not be able to locate migrants following their release into the United States.”

The news network reported that both Democrat and Republican administrations have released into the U.S. migrants with immigration court dates due to overcrowding in immigration detention facilities and policies limiting the detention of children.

The Biden administration in March 2021 began to release migrants without court dates but with notices to report to an ICE office within 60 days, NBC News said, adding that the inspector general’s investigation found that more than 25,000 of almost 100,000 migrants released with a notice to report to ICE were missing addresses in their files.

The inspector general found in a previous report that 29% of migrants released with a notice to report to ICE did not do so within the required 60-day period, the news network added.

DHS lost track of 177,000 migrants in the U.S.youtu.be

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