Baltimore doesn’t have the highest homicide death toll in the nation – Chicago tops the list with 650 in 2017. But Baltimore does have the highest murder rate, with 56 per 100,000 residents.
So city officials are allocating $200,000 this month for what?
The legal defense of illegal aliens who are facing deportation.
Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh insisted the objective is for everyone to get due process.
“We’re not making a decision as to their status, we’re making the decision to be supportive of individuals who live in our city,” she said.
The move comes not even a year, the Washington watchdog Judicial Watch noted, after prosecutors in the city told staff members not to charge illegal immigrants with minor, non-violent crimes.
That’s because they could get deported.
Now the city plans to hire immigration lawyers to help illegal aliens facing deportation.
“Unlike the criminal justice system, in immigration court the government doesn’t offer free lawyers to those who can’t afford them,” Judicial Watch explained. “This means that illegal aliens who don’t have the money to pay for one must represent themselves in legal proceedings or rely on volunteer attorneys or paralegals provided by immigrant rights groups.
“This leaves many illegal aliens in removal proceedings without adequate legal representation.”
The trend toward taxing U.S. residents to help illegal aliens began under the Obama administration, which in 2015 designated $2 million to pay for lawyers for illegal alien minors.
The Department of Justice handled the money through a special program for illegals called Justice AmeriCorps.
Now, cities, many of which also are declaring themselves “sanctuary” cities that ignore federal immigration law and policy, are spending their own taxpayers’ money, since the administration of President Trump has strengthened immigration enforcement.
For example, Los Angeles is spending $10 million to help “illegal immigrants dodge justice,” Judicial Watch reported. And Chicago’s city council spent $1.3 million tax dollars on it.
“Baltimore took it a step further by also creating a policy to go easy on alien criminals in state cases to avert collateral immigration consequences. An internal memo issued by Baltimore’s Chief Deputy State’s Attorney in mid-2017 instructs prosecutors to think twice before charging illegal immigrants with minor, non-violent crimes,” the Judicial Watch report said.
Chief Deputy Michael Schatzow said then that the consequences for illegal immigrants involved in criminal conduct have increased because of the potential for deportation.