(CNSNews.com) – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) cannot find 266 potentially dangerous foreign nationals who have overstayed their visas, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
According to testimony from Rebecca Gambler, director of the Homeland Security and Justice for GAO, on May 21, 2013 before the House Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security, DHS identified 1,901 illegal overstays of concern in 2011. As of March 2013, 14 percent remain missing.
The 1,901 cases were reprioritized for further investigation by DHS “because the subjects of the records could pose national security or public safety concerns.”
Of those that pose security threats, 266 could not be located, and nine individuals had been arrested.
The report said 481 (25.3 percent) of the cases were given to Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) division, because they presented “potential public safety threats.” ERO is “responsible for identifying and apprehending aliens who are subject to removal from the country, detaining these individuals when necessary, and removing aliens subject to removal from the United States.”
Also, 302 (15.9 percent) of the illegal overstays were in the process of changing their status to continue living in the U.S., and 711 (37.4 percent) had left the country.