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Press Release

Attorney General William P. Barr Makes Announcement on Sanctuary Cities at the National Sheriffs' Association Conference

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Alabama
Law Enforcement Cooperation in Northern Alabama Allows for Prosecution of Illegal Aliens Engaged in Criminal Conduct

BIRMINGHAM, ALA. – Attorney General William P. Barr has announced further actions the Department of Justice will take to protect the American people by ensuring the proper and lawful functioning of our nation’s federal immigration system.  Attorney General William Barr said, “Let us state the reality up front and as clearly as possible:  When we are talking about sanctuary cities, we are talking about policies that are designed to allow criminal aliens to escape.  These policies are not about people who come to our country illegally but have otherwise been peaceful and productive members of society.  Their express purpose is to shelter aliens whom local law enforcement has already arrested for other crimes.  This is neither lawful nor sensible.”

Read the Attorney General’s full remarks at this link:

“Our federal, state, and local law enforcement within the Northern District of Alabama are steadfast in their commitment to enforce all the laws of our state and federal justice systems,” Town said. “This commitment is due to the support and coordination local law enforcement has with their federal partners. Through the Prosecutor-to-Prosecutor Program my office has prioritized improving the quality and reliability of the assistance that we provide to our local law enforcement partners. Our continued partnership has developed mutual respect and support by federal and local law enforcement for the mission and work of their counterparts. One of the many benefits of this common purpose and allegiance between federal, state, and local law enforcement has been a shared adherence to respect all federal immigration laws and keeping our communities safe.”

Examples of illegal aliens prosecuted in this office:

Felipe Martinez-Arrellanes, a citizen of Mexico, was removed from the United States to Mexico in June 2013 following a felony conviction.  In January 2018, Martinez-Arrellanes was arrested under the name “Felipe Martinez” by the Tuscaloosa Police Department and charged with Soliciting Prostitution.  Martinez-Arrellanes was taken into ICE custody.  Martinez-Arrellanes pled guilty to Illegal Re-entry After Deportation or Removal in April 2018.

Mike Sierra, a citizen of Mexico, was removed from the United States to Mexico in February 2016 and July 2014.  Before, during and after those removals, Sierra, often using an alias, was convicted two times for Driving Under the Influence and two times for Illegal Entry into the United States.  Following his most recent conviction in January 2018, for Driving Under the Influence in Northport, Ala., the defendant was taken into ICE custody.   Sierra pled guilty to Illegal Re-Entry Deportation or Removal in March 2018.

Jose Hernandez Hernandez, a citizen and national of Mexico, illegally possessed a Rossi 38 caliber pistol in June 2018, in Madison County.  Hernandez pled guilty to Possession of a Firearm by an Illegal Alien in October 2018.


Updated December 27, 2021