The United States has over 43.5 million immigrants. Deportation is the formal removal or expulsion of a person or group of people from the United States for violating immigration law. Foreign nationals may be deported from the U.S. for participating in criminal acts, violating a visa, or being a threat to public safety.
U.S. Deportation Process
Foreign nationals who arrive in the U.S. without documents or with false or forged documents may be deported quickly without a court hearing in what’s called expedited removal. Others may need to go through a lengthier removal process.
The deportation is as follows:
- The foreign national facing deportation may be held in a detention center before trial or deportation.
- An Immigration Court of the U.S. Department of Justice hears the case of the foreign national.
- If the judge rules for the person to be deported, the receiving country must agree to accept them and issue travel documents before Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) carries out the removal.
- The foreign national is then removed from the U.S., typically by air transportation but sometimes through a combination of ground and air transportation.
- Foreign nationals who have committed nonviolent crimes may be subject to Rapid Removal of Eligible Parolees Accepted for Transfer (Rapid REPAT). Rapid REPAT is a program that allows selected criminal aliens incarcerated in the U.S. to accept early release in exchange for voluntarily returning to their country of origin.
Those facing deportation may be able to leave tohe U.S. on their own, known as voluntary departure, before completing the formal removal proceedings. Those who are undocumented immigrants may be able to apply for an adjustment of status to get a green card and become a lawful permanent resident. Anyone who feels that their civil rights have been violated in the immigration, detention, or deportation proceedings process, you can file a complaint with the Department of Homeland Security.
Between 2003 and 2018, 4,617,463 foreign nationals were deported from the United States. 2012 and 2009 saw the highest number of deportation with 407,821 and 401,501 deportations respectively. Unsurprisingly, some of the states with the highest deportation rates have the highest immigrant populations in the U.S. and are known as immigration hubs.
Texas has, by far, the highest number of deportations of any state. Texas is known for having constant immigrant traffic, specifically from Mexico. Three cities in Texas have some of the highest numbers of foreign nationals departing from them at deportation: Laredo deported 477,834 foreign nationals, El Paso deported 283,510, and Harlingen deported 271,149.
California, Texas, Florida, and New York have the highest total immigrant populations among all 50 states. Los Angeles County, California alone has 3.457 million immigrants. Of those deported, 2,985,045 were from Mexico, 495,447 were from Guatemala, 400,446 were from Honduras, and 281,095 were from El Salvador. Additionally, of the foreign nationals who were deported, 2,223,381 did not receive a conviction. Illegal entry and driving under the influence were the two largest convictions of foreign nationals who were deported. 401,023 were convicted of illegal entry and 219,256 received DUIs.