Feds To Form S.F. Immigration Unit

Josh Richman, Inside Bay Area, April 27, 2007

San Francisco is one of six U.S. cities slated to get a new multiagency task force on immigration-document fraud like that which led agents to arrest 13 workers last week at an Oakland plastic bag factory.

The task force, led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also will target benefit fraud: cases in which people lie or omit information from their applications for citizenship, asylum or a visa.

It will be modeled on similar efforts up and running in 11 other cities for the past year. Newtask forces also are forming in Baltimore, Chicago, Miami, Phoenix and Tampa, Fla.

Participants include ICE; the Justice Department; the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; the inspectors general of the Labor Department, Social Security Administration and State Department; the State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security; the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; the U.S. Secret Service; and state and local law enforcement agencies.

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Many of the federal agencies involved in the task force already share information on some cases, she said, but they’ll be stepping it up now. To have representatives from all the agencies working together in one office “in the long run . . . would be ideal,” she said, but for now she’s unsure of the logistics.

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