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Congressman Dan Donovan

Representing the 11th District of New York


Donovan, House Pass Bill To Deport Members Of Criminal Gangs

September 14, 2017
Press Release
Under current law, membership in a criminal street gang does not make an immigrant inadmissible or deportable; “Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act” changes immigration law to restrict admission and allow for deportation of known members of criminal gangs

Washington, DC – September 14, 2017….Congressman Dan Donovan (NY-11), a former prosecutor, today voted to pass the Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act. The legislation, which passed the House by a 233-175 margin, updates immigration law to permit deportation of known members of a criminal gang who are in the country illegally. The measure also permits immigration authorities to deny entry to criminal gang members.

Congressman Donovan said, “I’ve seen the tragic consequences of gang violence during my 20 years as a prosecutor and now in Congress. Violent criminal gang members should not be walking the streets, but it adds insult to injury when they never should have been in our country in the first place. Today’s vote will allow immigration authorities to deny entry to violent gang members or deport them if they’re already here.”

Under the legislation, the Department of Homeland Security, after consultation with the Department of the Justice, could designate a group as a criminal gang if the group engaged in violent crime, drug felonies, witness tampering, human trafficking, harboring other criminal immigrants, or money laundering. Members of a designated gang would also be ineligible for other immigration benefits, including asylum, temporary protected status, and special immigrant juvenile visas.

Earlier this summer, Congressman Donovan traveled with President Trump aboard Air Force One to a law enforcement event on Long Island. In his speech at the event, President Trump outlined his agenda to combat violent criminal gangs such as MS-13. Congressman Donovan supports President Trump’s initiative to crack down on gang violence and target gang members for prosecution and deportation.