Federal immigration authorities are expected to begin sweeps in Los Angeles and elsewhere Sunday to arrest undocumented immigrants named in court-ordered deportation warrants.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement did not immediately respond to a request for comment. However, the Los Angeles Police Department issued a statement confirming the federal actions.
“The department is aware of upcoming Immigration and Customs Enforcement actions beginning this Sunday, directed toward individuals who have been issued final deportation orders,” the LAPD statement said. “These enforcement actions will include individuals residing in the Los Angeles region. The department is not participating or assisting in any of these enforcement actions.”
Before kicking off his reelection campaign, President Donald Trump tweeted Monday night that ICE agents “will begin deporting the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States … as fast as they come in.”
About 140 people are being targeted in Southern California, The Los Angeles Times reported.
California Governor Gavin Newsom said that the proposed raids are “cruel, misdirected and are creating unnecessary fear and anxiety.”
Newsom said he wanted state residents to know “they have legal rights and protections, regardless of their immigration status. California is a place of refuge — that includes our schools, our courts and our hospitals and clinics. We hold certain institutions sacred and people should continue to access programs and services they need.”
Immigration service providers reported that some communities are increasingly worried about the forthcoming actions.
“Our phones are ringing off the hook with immigrants calling and asking what their families can do in case a member is arrested by immigration authorities,” said coalition member Alicia Flores, executive director of the Hank Lacayo Youth and Family Center in Panorama City.
“We cannot afford a repeat of the mass raids and deportations against the Mexican community during the 1930s,” Gloria Saucedo of the Centro Mexico community center in the San Fernando Valley said. “That is why we are going to mobilize and organize our community like never before.”
Civil rights activist Dr. John Fernandez, a retired teacher who taught for 24 years at Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights, said that undocumented immigrants should remember their rights if confronted by ICE agents.
“If they happen to come to your door, they cannot come in without a warrant,” he said. “Do not say anything and do not sign anything.”
In its statement, LAPD said the department has told members of the Latino community that Los Angeles police officers would not be participating in the immigration sweeps.
“We are committed to protecting the public through meaningful relationship building and community partnerships,” the LAPD said.
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