Chris Pleasance, Daily Mail, February 6, 2020
The Trump Administration has banned New York state residents from applying to or renewing their membership to Global Entry and many other Trusted Traveler Programs in response to a new law that gives illegal immigrants driving licenses.
Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf announced the immediate freeze on applicants wanting faster border crossings after President Trump slammed ‘left-wing states’ that ‘release dangerous criminal aliens to prey upon the public’ in his State of the Union address.
The Green Light Law is a sanctuary policy that allows undocumented migrants to apply for a license using a passport from their home country rather than a US document.
It also bars the DMV from sharing that information with ICE and Border Protection, meaning illegal immigrants are safeguarded from deportation – even if they have a criminal record.
Wolf revealed the sweeping policy change in a letter to the New York state government that was obtained by Fox News.
The Trusted Traveler Programs – or TTPs – include Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, and FAST.
If you currently have access to one of the programs, you will not be able to reapply under the strict guidelines.
Wolf has ruled that nobody from the state can apply for programs that expedite entry into the United States from abroad because authorities cannot properly vet them.
‘In New York alone, last year ICE arrested 149 child predators, identified or rescued 105 victims of exploitation and human trafficking, arrested 230 gang members, and seized 6,487 pounds of illegal narcotics, including fentanyl and opioids.
‘In the vast majority of these cases, ICE relied on New York DMV records to fulfill its mission,’ he added.
The letter says the ban – which affects the Global Entry scheme, NEXUS, Sentri, and FAST – comes into effect immediately and is dated February 5.
The ban will also affect those who need to re-apply for membership of a traveler program when it expires after five years.
‘Because the act prevents DHS from accessing New York DMV records in order to determine whether a TTP (trusted traveler program) applicant or re-applicant meets program eligibility requirements, New York residents will no longer be eligible to enroll or re-enroll,’ Wolf wrote.
As soon as the Green Light law was signed in December 2016, immigrants were seen lining up at DMVs around New York to get their hands on licenses.
The move came just a day after Trump attacked so-called sanctuary cities in his State of the Union address, singling out New York for particular criticism.
Trump highlighted the case of Reeaz Khan, 21, an illegal migrant from Guyana accused of raping and murdering 92-year-old Maria Fuertes in Queens.
ICE has accused New York authorities of denying a detainment request they placed on Khan because of his immigration status after he was arrested six weeks earlier for assaulting his father with a broken coffee mug.
ICE argued the state’s sanctuary policies were to blame for the release.
Trump used his address to call on Congress to pass the Justice for Victims of Sanctuary Cities Act, which would allow victims of crimes committed by illegal migrants to sue sanctuary cities.
He added: ‘The United States of America should be a sanctuary for law-abiding Americans – not criminal aliens.’
Wolf made his announcement about the traveler programs in a letter to New York authorities the following day.
He also noted that exporting vehicles that are registered in New York ‘will be significantly delayed and could also be costlier’ as a result of the DMV limiting access to its records.
Rich Azzopardi, adviser to New York governor Andrew Cuomo, told CNN that the letter is being reviewed by the state.
‘This is obviously political retaliation by the federal government and we’re going to review our legal options,’ he said.