Should ICE Be a Part of the Intelligence Community? | NTK Network Should ICE Be a Part of the Intelligence Community?

Should ICE Be a Part of the Intelligence Community?

Reports indicated that the nation's premier immigration law enforcement agency could soon join the group of currently 17 agencies that have access to unfiltered intelligence.

By NTK Staff | 02.08.2018 @4:27pm
Should ICE Be a Part of the Intelligence Community?

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is often on the front lines in the fight against international drug trafficking, terrorism, and organized crime, but the agency has long been blocked from total access to the “raw intelligence” that federal organizations like the FBI and CIA can obtain.

ICE is attempting to change that, according to a report from Betsy Woodruff in The Daily Beast, lobbying the executive branch to include them in the Intelligence Community (IC). This effort began under President Obama and continued into the Trump administration, she wrote:

If ICE joins the Intelligence Community, then its officials will have increased access to raw intelligence, unfiltered by analysts. This could prove useful to both of the agency’s components: Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), which investigates transnational crimes, including drug trafficking, money laundering, cybercrimes, and arms trafficking; and Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), which arrests and detains undocumented immigrants.

The likelihood that ICE would join the IC increased with Trump’s election, Woodruff speculated, pointing out that the president continues to lambast the leadership and assessments of other IC members.

Groups like the ACLU and the Project on Government Oversight criticized the idea, calling it “frankly terrifying.”

But ICE agents are on the ground every day, in circumstances that are often dangerous, trying to remove “fugitive aliens” involved in violent crime. It’s perplexing why they already don’t have access to the best intelligence.

As ICE continues to battle transnational gangs, potential terrorists, and drug dealers in American streets, they will have a strong argument to bring to the president for intelligence access.

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