The American citizen is the forgotten man in the entire immigration debate. Media coverage, and consequently policy discussion, surrounding the issue of illegal immigration revolves exclusively around the needs and desires of the illegal alien, as if the American people don’t exist. One federal prosecutor overseeing the prosecution of hundreds of illegal aliens for identity theft in Mississippi is accusing NPR of omitting a phrase from his interview to ensure that American victims are literally forgotten in this discussion.
On August 7, ICE agents fanned out in seven towns throughout Mississippi and arrested 680 illegal aliens in the largest worksite immigration enforcement operation in history. Given the importance of the promise in 1986 to criminalize illegal alien employment, and given the number of illegal aliens in this country, this story shouldn’t have been newsworthy, but after years of limited enforcement, the sweep of Koch Foods of its illegal alien workers has generated a lot of interest.
One of the stories to emerge from this raid is that many illegal aliens, even the ones who don’t commit other crimes, steal the identities of Americans. Illegal immigration is likely the single biggest factor driving identity theft, which is a devastating crime to the victim. According to the DHS, 400 U.S. citizens had their identities stolen by illegal aliens working in these poultry plants in Mississippi. Last week, under the leadership of Mike Hurst, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Mississippi, 119 of these illegal aliens apprehended in the August raids were prosecuted for identity theft or fraud.
NPR sat down with Hurst to discuss the enforcement action, and he was trying to make the point that people often mistakenly believe these are victimless crimes. Now, Hurst is accusing NPR of editing out his reference to victims of these illegal alien workers from the transcript posted Tuesday.
.@ICEgov said 400 Americans’ identities stolen by illegal aliens detained in MS on 8.7.19
So why would @NPR CUT OUT CRIME VICTIMS (among other things) mid-sentence?
— US Attorney Mike Hurst (@USAttyHurst) November 13, 2019
— US Attorney Mike Hurst (@USAttyHurst) November 13, 2019
This wasn’t just a selected quote in a longer column or news report as part of broader prose written by the author. This was a transcript of the conversation that omitted the references to victims. In this case, hundreds of Americans will likely spend years digging out of criminal and financial problems associated with their names.
“It’s extremely concerning that some media outlets would manipulate and delete words in an interview just because they don’t fit the media’s preconceived narrative,” said U.S. attorney Hurst in response to request for comment from CR. “Nevertheless, we in the U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to tell the truth, do justice, and fight for crime victims and the public, no matter the cost.”
The media and politicians continue to ignore the victims of identity theft in the context of the immigration debate. Bloomberg reporter Drew Armstrong recently wrote an essay chronicling his personal devastation caused by an illegal alien identity thief. It took him six years to clean up the financial mess, the endless purchases under his name, and the watchlists that he was placed on as a result of the illicit activity.
It’s estimated that roughly 75 percent of illegal aliens commit some sort of felony fraud or identity theft.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies, “Eight of the 10 states with the highest percentage of illegal aliens in their total population are among the top 10 states in identity theft.” In Arizona alone, over one million children are victims of stolen identity, more than four times the national rate. Hispanic-Americans with Latino-sounding surnames are most vulnerable to such theft.
This is a major problem overlooked in the context of Obama’s DACA amnesty, which is viewed as a zero-sum game of sympathy for the illegal immigrants without regard for the harm it has caused Americans. According to the Washington Times, given that most DACA applicants had committed identity theft, in 2012, they were originally required to “include all [Social Security]
numbers [they] have ever used” in the application for a work permit.” But several months later, “as soon as this potential disincentive to apply for DACA was brought to the administration’s attention, USCIS rushed out a statement that they were ‘not interested’ in identifying individual violations of ‘some federal law in an employment relationship,’ and they amended their DACA website to limit the reporting of SSNs by DACA applicants to those ‘officially issued to you by the Social Security Administration.’”
Thus, hundreds of thousands of Americans whose identities were stolen over the years by these illegal immigrants will never see a resolution to their cases, at least not by our government. The weight of the entire political world is advocating for these illegal aliens (as witnessed by the numerous heavy-hitting industries filing amicus briefs in the court case), but who will advocate on behalf of victims of stolen identity? Who will give voice to those who are now impersonated by people who don’t even belong in the country?
Thankfully, one federal prosecutor recognizes that his job is to enforce our laws that protect us as citizens. It would be nice if the elected officials in Congress realized they were put in office to prioritize the needs of the citizens over the desires of foreign nationals, not the other way around. Then again, the more the media successfully obfuscates the existence of crimes by and victims of illegal aliens, the less pressure they will feel to even acknowledge it.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.