DHS: Progress and priorities, I

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  • Increased law enforcement: So far this year, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has removed or returned more than 295,000 illegal aliens from the U.S. and dramatically increased penalties against employers whose hiring processes violate the law, securing fines and judgments totaling in the millions, while making 1,070 criminal arrests and more than 4,700 administrative arrests. ICE has arrested more than 10,000 gang members and associates in cities nationwide through Operation Community Shield. Through Operation Predator, a program targeting sexual predators that prey on children, ICE has arrested more than 11,000 predators since its inception in 2003. Under DHS, the U.S. Secret Service has made more than 29,000 criminal arrests for counterfeiting, cyber and other financial crimes, 98 percent of which resulted in convictions, and seized more than $295 million in counterfeit currency. Also, in fiscal 2007, the Coast Guard interdicted over 6,000 migrants attempting to gain illegal entry into the U.S.
  • Protecting U.S. and world leaders: The Secret Service continues to face — and meet — serious challenges of protecting U.S. and world leaders, as well as presidential candidates, while implementing comprehensive plans for securing the overall 2008 presidential campaign. Under DHS, the Secret Service has led the security planning and implementation for more than ten designated National Special Security Events, including the 2008 Democratic and Republican National Conventions.
  • E-Verify: This U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services program allows employers to use an automated system to verify name, date of birth, and Social Security Number, along with immigration information for non-citizens, against federal databases to confirm the employment eligibility of both citizen and non-citizen new hires. More than 80,000 U.S. businesses have automatically verified over 5.3 million workers so far, and on average, the program increases by about 1,000 new employers each week.
  • Protecting the Nation from Dangerous Goods

    As a part of its risk-based approach, the department is focused on programs to identify, track, and intercept nuclear and radiological components and systems at ports of entry and in transportation systems within U.S. borders. The department is also intensifying efforts to strengthen capabilities that reduce the risk of a biological attack in the United States.

    • Comprehensive radiation detection: The Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO), in coordination with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the U.S. Coast Guard, has deployed more than 1,000 radiation detection devices to the nation’s land and sea ports of entry. 100 percent of cargo containers crossing the southern border and 93