Border ‘Gotaways’ are Getting Away from Justice


November 30, 2023

By Brian Lonergan

If anything good has come from the last three years of watching our political leaders surrender our national borders, it may be the implosion of narratives on immigration to which many Americans have previously given the benefit of the doubt.

Chief among these fraudulent narratives is the assumption that virtually all of those who break our laws by entering the country illegally are doing so for noble purposes. A scan of news headlines on any given day will provide fresh examples of illegal aliens either hiding from justice for criminal acts in their homelands or engaging in criminal behavior here.

In one of the most recent incidents, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, arrested Saulo Cardona Ferreira, 37, a Brazilian national here illegally who is wanted in his home country for fleeing multiple convictions including raping a 5-year-old child.

According to ICE, Ferreira entered the United States at an unknown time and place and evaded the border patrol. In other words, he is a “gotaway,” a term now listed in the U.S. code for an unlawful border crosser who is observed making an unlawful entry, is not apprehended, and is not turned back. Since the start of the Biden administration, 1.7 million gotaways have entered the country.   

Upon learning of Ferreira’s arrest, some may be shocked to hear that ICE is actually still apprehending criminal aliens. Since January 2021, the Biden White House has been quietly working to limit ICE from carrying out its mission to enforce immigration laws.

It is getting harder to defend the idea that allowing much of the Third World to move here en masse somehow makes America stronger for being more “diverse,” as we have been endlessly told.

Team Biden has cut funding for adult detention beds and instead acquired family shelter beds for short-term family accommodation for “processing families prior to release.” The administration has also placed radical illegal immigration activists in key agency positions. Included among these is Principal Legal Advisor Kerry Doyle, who spent much of her career as a legal and political advocate for anti-borders policies that undermine the very prosecutions her current office is charged with enforcing.

To further deflate its agents’ morale, ICE and U.S. Customs and Border Protection were given new guidance on the preferred and more “inclusive language” its agents must use. Under the terminology mandates, “undocumented aliens” are now “undocumented noncitizens.” Agency staff are also ordered to discontinue the use of “assimilation” in favor of “integration.”

Combined with the utter lawlessness now prevalent in the border areas and most sanctuary cities, it is fair to ask why anyone would want to work in immigration enforcement at all.

That Ferreira was arrested in Martha’s Vineyard is a fact rich in irony. You may recall the incident last year when Florida Governor Ron DeSantis flew a few dozen illegal aliens to the Vineyard to draw attention to the border crisis. While residents of the ultra-exclusive, left-leaning haven for the rich spoke to the media about welcoming the migrants, their pro-sanctuary rhetoric contrasted sharply with their actions, as within a matter of days the migrants were quickly relocated off the island.

Even with that episode and an alien with a child rape conviction living among them, the one-percenters of the Vineyard will no doubt remain steadfast in their support of sanctuary policies, so long as those policies are practiced elsewhere, and the corresponding bad consequences don’t spoil life on their beachfront properties.   

Back in the real world, the White House is trying to put a positive spin on threats that have been created by its irresponsible immigration policies. ICE has reported that in fiscal year 2022, it arrested 46,396 illegal aliens with criminal histories, which included 8,164 sex and sexual assault offenses.    

That sounds like good news, right? It’s actually not, when you consider that however many gotaway criminals law enforcement can catch, many more are still here, hiding among the millions of new arrivals that have been allowed to violate our laws and remain in the country.

It is getting harder to defend the idea that allowing much of the Third World to move here en masse somehow makes America stronger for being more “diverse,” as we have been endlessly told. In addition to those like Ferreira hiding from their past crimes, the vast majority of those seeking asylum for alleged persecution in their homelands are eventually found to have made fraudulent claims.

While immigration policy was once conducted for humanitarian reasons or to serve a benefit to the United States, today it is more of a shameless hustle to satisfy big corporations looking to cut labor costs and for politicians to realign the demographic makeup of the country to achieve their electoral goals. The impact of mass migration on American citizens who live with all the bad outcomes, including having dangerous sex offenders living among us, does not appear to even register as a concern to most lawmakers today. That will continue until Americans stand with one voice and demand that our immigration laws be enforced.

Brian Lonergan is director of communications at the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) in Washington, D.C, and co-host of IRLI’s “No Border, No Country” podcast.

Also published at Chronicles, November 30, 2023.

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