Dozens detained by ICE agents in Detroit

By Priya Mann - Reporter, Dawn Jorgenson - Graham Media Group

DETROIT - Dozens of people were rounded up throughout the day Sunday and taken to an ICE office on the east side.

Loved ones gathered, clinging to a nearby fence, trying to catch a glimpse of their family members and pleading to communicate with them.

"I voted for Trump thinking he would protect ethnic minorities," Shantal Hanna, whose husband was detained, said. "Now it's blowing up in my face."

In some cases, people were approached at their home.  Families recorded their loved ones being taken away in cuffs. Many are Chaldean and immigrated to the U.S. from Iraq.

"There's a reason why we fled our country," said Zeinab Al-Badry, whose husband was also detained. "It's not to have fun in America, but to be safe."

"If you go to Iraq and pass by ISIS, they are going to get killed," Junior Seiba, whose cousin was detained, said.

Families members said their loved ones arrived to the country legally. Some are married to U.S. citizens and have American-born children.

Many of the people detained on Sunday have prior convictions -- in some cases misdemeanors, dating back decades.

"We are trying to rebuild our lives," said one of the people whose family member was detained. "Why are you trying to punish people who made one mistake? Everyone makes mistakes."

After hours of waiting, the bus departed Sunday evening. Chaos and heartbreak ensued outside the ICE Enforcement and Removal Office.

The focus of the targeted enforcement operations is consistent with the routine, targeted arrests carried out by ICE’s Fugitive Operations Teams on a daily basis.

ICE will not confirm an operation prior to its completion, nor will ICE speculate on future operational activities.

Local 4 News spoke with some of the detainees' attorneys, who were unsure how long they will remain in custody, if their families will be able to see them again, or if they will be deported.

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