Sunday, May 4, 2008

Immigration hold placed on 10 arrested in traffic stop (Russellville Courier)

Immigration hold placed on 10 arrested in traffic stop
Two others in van remain at large

Story date: May 3, 2008

By Mary Kincy Benefield
News Editor

A spokesperson for the Arkansas State Police confirmed Thursday officers apprehended 10 people who fled from a van in an area off State Highway 12 near Atkins after a trooper initiated an I-40 traffic stop on the vehicle for careless driving.

Bill Sadler said all the individuals who fled the van were apprehended with the exception of two — one of whom was the driver — and cited for fleeing.

Several residents of the area looked on as troopers and local law enforcement combed the area for the individuals who fled during the traffic stop, some snapping photos of the rural landscape as officers searched the area.

A representative of the Pope County Detention Center confirmed those arrested remained in custody as of Friday, a circumstance Sadler attributed to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.

“Those who are in custody are being held there based on a hold order from ICE,” he said Thursday.

Temple Black, a spokesperson for ICE, said when contacted about the situation Friday he was unaware of the particulars of the hold.

Asked to comment on ICE’s procedure in such cases in general, Black said most resulted in the individuals in question being photographed, fingerprinted and run through a background check for outstanding warrants.

“Also, if they’ve been deported prior — you know, one time, two times — they will also be referred over to the U.S. attorney, generally speaking,” he added.

“It all depends. There’s a lot of different scenarios,” Black said.

According to a story circulated Thursday by The Associated Press, nearly all of 24 men arrested in a raid on a construction project at the Little Rock National Airport earlier this week will likely be deported. Federal agents said they arrested the suspected illegal immigrants Wednesday at the site of Supermarine, a company that provides fuel and supplies to corporate and private aircraft.

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