by WorldTribune Staff, March 4, 2020
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents have apprehended an illegal immigrant who was charged with child rape in New York City, but had been released due to the city’s sanctuary policies.
ICE agents on Monday detained Miguel Federico Ajqui-Ajtzalam, a 20-year-old illegal from Guatemala, according to an ICE press release.
ICE said that Ajqui-Ajtzalam had been in New York Police Department (NYPD) custody for allegedly raping a person under 14 years of age, but local authorities did not honor the ICE detainer lodged against him, and chose instead to release him back into the community.
NYPD authorities arrested Ajqui-Ajtzalam on Feb. 27 on “charges of felony rape in the 2nd, sexual abuse in the 2nd for sexual contact with a person less than 14 yrs., and act in manner to injure a child less than 17 yrs,” according to ICE.
“It’s inconceivable that a individual who was arrested for local charges of rape and sexual abuse of a child would be released back into the community instead of being transferred to ICE who had a detainer in place,” ICE spokesman Thomas Decker said in a statement released Tuesday.
“It’s frightening that our detainer was ignored and he was released onto New York City streets to possibly re-offend,” Decker said. “The safety of city residents, especially the more vulnerable, continues to be a priority for ICE enforcement.”
ICE reported that Ajqui-Ajtzalam was apprehended by Border Patrol in September 2016 after entering the country illegally. He was processed as an unaccompanied alien child (UAC) and released from ICE custody the following month under an Order of Recognizance.
The Ajqui-Ajtzalam incident “marks the latest in the public relations war between New York City authorities and ICE,” The Daily Caller reported.
New York City touts a strict sanctuary policy, prohibiting law enforcement officials from cooperating with ICE agents. This includes a ban on honoring ICE detainer requests.
“Such policies have resulted in deadly consequences for residents, including the brutal rape and murder of an elderly woman allegedly perpetrated by an illegal alien who was previously released by city authorities, despite an ICE detainer,” the Daily Caller noted.
ICE acting director Matthew Albence wrote a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio earlier in February, hoping to begin a conversation on how the Democratic mayor and ICE can work together to keep residents of New York City safe.
However, ICE agents say de Blasio has not attempted to engage them in any meaningful dialogue.