U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also known as “ICE”, is the law enforcement arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that enforces American immigration laws. Among other duties, ICE is responsible for detaining and removing illegal immigrants. In many cases, however, ICE relies on local law enforcement authorities to identify, report, and turn over immigrants to them for deportation purposes. Whenever an immigrant or a foreign national commits a crime, local or state law enforcement officials report the crime to ICE, who then verifies the individual’s immigration status. If the individual is in the country illegally, ICE will evaluate the crime and its severity in order to determine whether it qualifies for an ICE hold, or a legal detainer on the individual. Serious criminal offenses such as rape or homicide will automatically trigger an ICE hold, but even some less-serious offenses, depending on your jurisdiction and the ICE office, may trigger a hold as well. Once transferred to ICE, they will make a decision about whether to continue to detain the individual throughout their immigration process, whether to allow their release, or whether to set bond. Regardless as to whether ICE places a hold on the individual, his or her criminal charges will proceed normally through the criminal justice system. If convicted, the individual will serve any jail or prison sentence. After he or she has served the sentence, however, ICE may then pick up the individual and detain him or her in order to begin deportation proceedings. If ICE fails to pick up an individual from the facility within 48 hours of the time from which he or she would otherwise have been released, then law enforcement officials must release the individual, but be warned, ICE may still show up at your house! Landerholm Immigration, A.P.C., has the experience that you need when you are facing deportation charges. We know how to gather the facts that are relevant to your case, assess your options, and determine whether you have any legal defenses that may enable you to avoid deportation and remain in the U.S. Contact the Oakland immigration attorneys at our office today and learn how we potentially can help you and your family through this difficult situation.