Thursday, April 21, 2011

8 NY counties join immigration fingerprint program (AP c/o Wall Street Journal)

8 NY counties join immigration fingerprint program
* APRIL 21, 2011, 3:40 P.M. ET

Associated Press

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Federal immigration authorities have signed on eight more New York counties to the Secure Communities program.

The 2½-year-old program red flags potential criminal illegal immigrants by running the fingerprints of people arrested by state or local authorities against federal government databases.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials say Thursday that Chautauqua, Niagara, Livingston, Ontario, Otsego, Seneca, Steuben and Yates counties are now part of the program.

From now on, when someone's booked there for a crime, their fingerprints will be sent not only to the Justice Department to check for criminal history, but to Homeland Security's biometric system to check against immigration law enforcement records.

There are now 22 counties in New York using Secure Communities and 1,211 jurisdictions in 41 states. The goal is for complete coverage by 2013.

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