LARGO, Fla. – The country's immigration enforcement agency has announced a new partnership in Florida to allow some sheriff deputies to serve warrants on behalf of the federal government.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement said in a statement Monday that Pinellas County is the first jurisdiction to participate, but more have expressed interest. ICE will train deputies for one day to enable them to arrest people on immigration charges while they are in jail and already facing other charges.
The American Civil Liberties Union quickly condemned the plan, saying local agencies would risk violating search and seizure laws. The warrants are not reviewed by a judge.
The Florida Legislature last week passed a contentious bill that requires jails to hold people for ICE.
Last year, several Florida law enforcement agencies agreed to increase cooperation with the agency.