by WorldTribune Staff, August 9, 2021
A Republican U.S. congressman who represents Abilene, Texas says he has tried in vain to find out any information whatsoever on the Biden administration’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency practice of dumping illegal aliens into the town and setting them free.
“We have called everybody, up and down the chain, from the [Department of Homeland Security] Secretary’s office to the local ICE agents, we hadn’t gotten any answers. We are asking, what’s going on, how many people are being released, where are they going, who is following up, will they have a court date, or their immigration hearing, or are they not even given a notice to appear in court, are they tested for COVID, what is the protocol for notifying local officials, has there been a background check run on these folks?” an exasperated Rep. Jodey Arrington exclaimed, KLST-TV in Texas reports.
The station reveals that ICE is not telling local officials anything about its operations in Abilene:
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has been using the Abilene Regional Airport as a hub to transport undocumented immigrants across the country, and their mysterious operation has left local officials, legislators, and citizens wondering why this is happening and where the immigrants are going from here.
Our sister stations in Abilene, Texas, KTAB and KRBC, shot video of strange activity at the airport, such as immigrants getting off unmarked planes, getting frisked, then getting onto buses. Other video shows these buses arrive at the airport and let the immigrants off, where they then board planes to anywhere in the country.
Abilene Director of Transportation Don Green says the airport is only given 24 to 48 hours notice before the flights arrive and they aren’t aware of what exactly is going on – only that the planes are private charters from ICE.
“Green says sometimes, there are periods where no flights come in, but this month, there have been 2-3, which could explain why people are witnessing this strange activity more often,” KLST reported.
Arrington told the station he has been left completely uninformed about the goings-on in his congressional district:
So how long has this practice been going on? Congressman Jodey Arrington (R-19) says the flights have likely been coming into Abilene for some time but he was unaware that the immigrants were being taken to our airport after being released from custody, where they are then allowed to travel anywhere they have a sponsor, such as a family member or friend.
Arrington says he tried to contact Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and he was unable to get clear answers to several key questions, such as how many immigrants are being released, where they are going, and more.
On Aug. 5, Arrington penned a letter to Department of Homeland Security head Alejandro Mayorkas and ICE Acting Director Tae Johnson demanding further information. “The lack of communication and transparency surrounding this process is entirely unacceptable,” Arrington wrote. “Your agency failed to notify myself or any other local officials of these activities, leaving us unable to answer the concerns of our constituents in the communities we represent.”
Arrington ripped the callousness of installed President Joe Biden and his White House in ignoring the safety and well-being of American citizens in West Texas:
While the Biden administration has shown no concern for the lawlessness and chaos they have created, the people of West Texas want nothing to with this catastrophe. This Administration’s decision to “catch and release” illegal immigrants into communities in the Big Country is a threat to my constituents and entirely unacceptable. I am calling on you and President Biden to immediately end this reckless and irresponsible practice in West Texas and throughout the country. Do your job and secure the border, enforce the law, and protect your fellow citizens.
“Nobody, and I have called a number of local officials, and not one person has been notified by ICE or Homeland Security about this activity,” Arrington told KLST. “So no, they didn’t notify me, they didn’t notify County Commissioners, County Judges, mayors, nobody….”