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ICE, Border Patrol answer questions

The U.S. Border Patrol — not the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) — is entering Park Rapids apartments and gathering immigrants.

The claim that six immigrants were arrested without warrants was made a recent forum about immigration.

"That didn't happen," said Shawn Neudauer, who is a public affairs officer for the Department of Homeland Security U.S. ICE officer this area. "ICE did not make any of the arrests in Park Rapids — these were made by U.S. Border Patrol. Nor did we have any involvement with local law enforcement in that matter. As such, I cannot provide comment on those arrests. Any person arrested by ICE is informed of the charges at the time of arrest, be they criminal or administrative violations of U.S. immigration laws."

Area residents who have questions about ICE may contact community relations officer

Mary Hogan at 612-843-8886.

U.S. Border Patrol Agent Jesse Lindemer from headquarters in Grand Forks, N.D., provided answers to the following questions:

Are you aware of the arrests without warrants in Park Rapids?

"The U.S. Border Patrol routinely makes warrantless arrests and detentions for violation of immigration law," Lindemer said.

"Although most Border Patrol work is performed in the immediate border area, Section 1357 of Title 8 of the U.S. Code, together with the implementing regulations, provides Border Patrol Agents with broad law enforcement authorities, many of which — including authority to question individuals, make arrests, administer oaths, and take and consider evidence — are not geographically restricted by law."

What should immigrants do if they are taken into custody?

"People taken into custody by the U.S. Border Patrol are advised of their criminal or administrative rights. Whether the violations of immigration law are administrative or criminal is dependent on each individual situation and person in custody."

Have there been detentions by border patrol officers after traffic stops?

"The U.S. Border Patrol works closely with its state, local, and federal law enforcement partners and routinely provides assistance at their request. In some instances, the U.S. Border Patrol places individuals under arrest when it is determined that there has been a violation of immigration law," said Lindemer.