U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Special Victims Unit (ICE SVU), officially but inaccurately known as Homeland Security Investigations, has taken another step away from its immigration law enforcement and customs law enforcement responsibilities. Recently it took part in a Cops like sting on johns using prostitutes in Jessup, MD.
The Baltimore Sun September 26, 2012 Ian Duncan
Federal Agents Teamed Up With Local Police In Undercover Operation Targeting Men Soliciting Sex
Targeting human trafficking, federal agents participated in a joint operation with local law enforcement that led to the arrest of 23 men alleged to have solicited sex from undercover officers along U.S. 1 in Jessup.
The sting brought agents from Homeland Security Investigations, a division of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, together with officers from local and state police departments. While local law enforcement goes after so-called johns to deter prostitution, their value to federal authorities is as a source of information for cases against human traffickers.
That statement is nonsense. Other than possibly identifying the street walkers as possible aliens, johns provide nothing to an ICE SVU investigation.
“This enforcement action was an effort to further HSI criminal investigations,” said William Winter, the homeland security agency`s special agent in Baltimore. “HSI together with our local and state law enforcement partners are committed to protecting Maryland communities and continue to identify and dismantle the criminal organizations involved in these illicit activities.”
Were any illegal alien prostitutes arrested? No. Were any of the johns illegal aliens?
Nicole Navas, a spokeswoman for the HSI, said that the agency requested the operation in the hopes of furthering its investigations of human trafficking. While the arrests were on state charges and the men are not implicated in human trafficking, she said they will be interviewed by federal investigators to glean information that may help crack a prostitution ring.
A much more effective tactic would be to target the prostitutes themselves with a sting operation rather than their customers.
It is clear ICE SVU was just looking to pad its arrest statistics. And apparently not arresting illegal aliens is the official policy:
While the HSI is a part of the ICE, its agents build criminal cases that have an international connection rather than chasing immigration violations. It is the lead federal law enforcement agency charged with tackling human trafficking. In 2011, the agency indicted 444 people on trafficking charges and convicted 271 nationwide.
Which is not that great. It looks like they have only a 50% conviction rate. It shows that the so-called criminal investigators of ICE SVU don`t have great cases.
Give ICE SVU Special Agent-in-Charge Walter Winter a call and ask him to start arresting illegal aliens instead of American citizen johns:
40 South Gay Street, 3rd Floor
Baltimore, MD 21202
Main (410) 962-2620
Fax (410) 962-3469