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California Tries An Experimental "Catch And Release" Program

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California has started a new program for illegal aliens and legal immigrants convicted of a felony. It is basically an official catch and release program where the known lawbreaker is let back into society with an ankle bracelet on rather than deporting them immediately.

Sacramento Bee

The federal government wants to deport convicted felon Patricia Ann Law but freed the Santa Clara woman from jail last month anyway. Law, 52, is among the first Northern Californians to participate in an experimental program intended to keep immigrants out of jail while their deportation and asylum cases proceed.

Though Law must wear an electronic ankle bracelet and observe a strict curfew, she says she's grateful to be out of detention and close to her family.

OK, she's a felon, they want to deport her, what's taking so long. The article goes on to explain that she is here legally, but was put in jail for twenty months or so. I don't see why these cases are delayed. They should have had everything wrapped up by the time she got out of jail so that she could be immediately deported. Now we're wasting more man hours and money on tracking her. The article goes on to cover another case of this ankle bracelet test. Note the friendly way they describe this couple, which happen to be illegal aliens.
Genoveva Noriega Perez and her husband, Salvador Perez, are decidedly less enthusiastic.

The Santa Rosa couple have no criminal record, their attorneys say, but have jobs, children and own a home.

In the past, they probably wouldn't have been jailed during their deportation proceedings. Nonetheless, they had to comply with the new program's rigorous requirements, which included making three trips to San Francisco each week.

"They're treating us like criminals," Noriega Perez said.

Oh, they're treating illegal aliens like criminals. How dare they! Their story is a little sadder, but nonetheless they are lawbreakers. We can't be giving protected status to a certain criminal element. This couple however probably thought they were home free after they did get into the country and after 10 years of building a life are now facing the consequences of not coming here legally.

Noriega Perez, 34, came to the United States from Mexico with her husband in 1990, and they overstayed their visas.

Despite their undocumented status, they have established a life for themselves. She works as a schedule planner for her company; he's in construction. They have three children, ages 8, 10 and 14. They own a four-bedroom home.


"I don't think it's fair if we're showing them we're good people," she said. "We have our jobs. We have our house. How do they think we're going to leave all we have?"

While I feel bad for them, just a little bit, I'm furious at the fact they could remain in the country for over 10 years past their expired visa, buy a home, have a kid or two and nobody is the wiser. They're both illegals yet apparently employed. How does that work? Are they using false Social Security numbers? Are they being paid under the table? Seems like a clear-cut case of businesses hiring illegal aliens and that they should be investigated immediately.

I don't think anyone wishes a family like theirs to not have the chance at working and building a life, but they didn't follow our laws. They claim to have no criminal record, but they have broken our laws. That's a crime.

I think this new program is stupid. I'm for immediate deportation. There is no reason to sit around in court for sometimes years when you know someone is her without papers and illegally. We need to stop wasting money on housing illegals and deport them immediately so that we can spend that money on more enforcement of border control and prosecuting businesses that hire these illegals.

Tipped by: Lonewacko

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I absolutely agree with you. This is outrageous!

Posted by: Catherine Spann on December 20, 2004 08:03 AM

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