Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Sharp Increase of Hispanic Convicts
The Pew Hispanic Center has just release a study of Hispanics and federal crime. The numbers of Latinos in federal prisons or held for the feds in state and local jails amount to 40% of all such convicts. The population in federal imprisonment has doubled over the last two decades, but Latino detention has quadrupled. And this for an obvious reason -- the stepped up enforcement of immigration law by focusing on crimes like identity theft. Of the Hispanic prisoners 48% are held for immigration violations. Critics of the government's strategy argue that in criminalizing undocumented immigration the nation is turning from real crime fighting. The New York Times had previously reported that fighting crimes like smuggling of guns and drugs has suffered while offenses associated with unauthorized immigration has sored.