A video showing immigration enforcement officials arresting an undocumented worker inside a Beaverton-area home is raising serious questions about the actions of the agents and whether they were legal.
The seven-minute clip was posted to Facebook by George Cardenas Thursday afternoon, and it already has nearly half a million views.
In the video, Cardenas asks plain-clothed ICE agents whether they have a warrant to come inside. One of the agents can be seen responding by saying, “We don’t need a warrant to come in this home, no one lives here… I know that no one lives here, this is considered a place of business. You guys are here to work.”
The video then shows Cardenas asserting that someone did, in fact, live in the home but that the homeowner isn’t there at the moment. He then asked agents to wait outside for her, but they refused.
“You already let us in this far,” one of the agents could be heard saying in the video, a claim Cardenas could be heard denying.
Toward the end of the clip, agents could be seen moving to arrest Carlos Bolanos, who is seen with a paintbrush in one hand and a cell phone in the other.
“Give him the brush, put your hands behind your back. Do not resist! Do not resist!” an agent is heard saying.
Bolanos was taken away in handcuffs but was later released. A spokesperson for ICE confirmed Bolanos was the man agents were seeking to detain and confirmed the arrest was not a case of mistaken identity.
The spokesperson would not say how long Bolanos was detained before being released but did issue a statement on the incident.“The alien at issue has been released from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody pending further investigation regarding the circumstances of his arrest, and the matter has been referred to the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility and the Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General. The Agency is reviewing this incident."Mat dos Santos, the legal director for the ACLU of Oregon, told FOX 12 he was shocked by the video.
“It shows that ICE is willing to do just about anything, including violating their constitutional rights, and that they believe they are accountable to no one,” dos Santos said. “They’re violating constitutional law. They’re violating federal policy and guidelines, the whole interaction from start to finish was just wrong.”
Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley are also speaking out on the issue and sent a joint letter to Elizabeth Godfrey, the Deputy Field Office Director for ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations in Portland.
In the letter, the Senators write, “Americans do not lose their constitutional protection from warrantless search and seizure simply because ICE believes they may be immigrants. The actions of the ICE agents involved in Mr. Bolanos’ arrest are counter to the very policies and practices the Department of Homeland Security claims to uphold.”
Merkley and Wyden are asking for copies of the investigation into what happened.
They want to know the circumstances that led to Bolanos' arrest, whether the behavior of the agents in the video is consistent with ICE guidelines and what measures if any have been taken to address the “potentially unlawful behavior” of the agents involved.
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