A new study reveals that federal law enforcement officials are making more arrests related to immigration than in previous years. According to an analysis of Bureau of Justice Statistics data from the Pew Research Center, almost half the 165,265 arrests – 81,881 – made by the federal government in 2014, were for offenses related to immigration, including people smuggling, or illegal border crossing.
According to Pew, ten years earlier, 28 percent of federal arrests were immigration-related. The change highlights an increased focus on offenses relating to immigration by federal agencies. The top arrester of 2007 was the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which surpassed the Department of Justice.
DHS accounted for as much as 59 percent of federal arrests in 2014, a rise of 22 percent from the 37 percent in 2004, which, with the department having been established in late 2002, is the earliest year with available data. In contrast, just 35 percent of 2015 federal arrests were made by the Department of Justice, a 48 percent fall from a decade earlier. Customs and Border Protection, an agency within the DHS, made most of 2014’s arrests, as many as 64,954, more than the total number of all other agencies combined. This includes the FBI, which made 58,265 arrests.
The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice made up most of the arrests by the federal government, with no other federal department accounting for over one percent of the 2014 arrests.