182 Kenyans arrested in US as they applied for citizenship

Some 182 Kenyans living in the United States of America illegally were arrested while applying for citizenship to avoid deportation and become eligible for work permit.

They are among thousands of people who have been put behind bars by authorities for requesting to be included in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

The figures were released by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) under DACA program, an immigration policy that allows those with unlawful presence in the US after being brought in as children to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action.

In order to apply for DACA, individuals must not have been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more ‘non-significant’ misdemeanors not arising out of the same act.

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They are also expected to not pose a threat to national security or public safety.

The report covered 78 countries globally, with Mexico recording the highest number of people arrested at 91,272, while Mali, New Zealand and Taiwan had the least number at 21.

A total of 118,371 non-US citizens were arrested, out of which 464 are of unknown descent.

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Africa had 1,100 requestors arrested with North America recording the highest number at 107,669, while Oceania had the least number at 88.

The DACA policy, which was announced by former President Barack Obama in 2012, saw USCIS start accepting applications for the program on August 15, 2012.

The data may include arrests that did not result in convictions or where the charges were dropped or otherwise dismissed, a report said. 

Among the findings of the release showed nearly 110,000 DACA requestors out of nearly 889,000 (12 percent) had arrest records. Offenses in these arrest records include assault, battery, rape, murder and driving under the influence. 

Of approved DACA requestors with an arrest, 85 percent (67,861) of them were arrested or apprehended before their most recent DACA approval.

Of approved DACA requestors with an arrest, more than 31 percent (24,898) of them had more than one arrest.  

The report said of all DACA requestors, 218 had more than 10 arrests. Of those, 54 had a DACA case status of “approved” as of October 2019. 

“As DACA continues to be the subject of both public discourse and ongoing litigation, USCIS remains committed to ensuring transparency and that the American people are informed about those receiving DACA,” said USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli.?

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DACADeportationUS ImmigrantsWork Permit