Press Release
Senator Joe Pennacchio Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26)
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Contact: Erin Darreff / (609) 847-3600
March 20, 2019
Pennacchio Condemns NJ’s ‘Sanctuary State Directive’ for Protecting Dangerous Criminals

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In response to news reports detailing the deportation of an illegal immigrant wanted for murder in El Salvador, Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) released the following statement condemning the State Attorney General’s “sanctuary state” directive, which went into effect this week:

In response to news reports detailing the deportation of an illegal immigrant wanted for murder in El Salvador, Sen. Joe Pennacchio released the following statement condemning the State Attorney General’s “sanctuary state” directive, which went into effect this week. (SenateNJ.com)

“Illegals that commit horrendous crimes are finding refuge in New Jersey and today’s news report of a murderer who was deported proves that,” Pennacchio said. “This killer was hiding out in Newark. Fortunately, federal authorities deported him back to his home country so he can be tried for aggravated murder and associating with criminal organizations. The recent implementation of Attorney General’s ‘sanctuary state’ directive is putting New Jersey communities at risk and it is putting our families in danger. We must fight back.”

In an effort to combat the NJ Attorney General’s immigration policies, Senator Pennacchio recently introduced legislation, S-3572, to ensure illegal immigrants who have been convicted or are fleeing a sex crime charge from another country are required to register under Megan’s Law when they are apprehended in New Jersey.

The bill also states that if local police are unable to confirm the legal immigration status of a convicted sex offender, they must notify and cooperate with the appropriate federal authority.
Under Attorney General Grewal’s 2018 “New Jersey Immigrant Trust Directive,” commonly referred to as the sanctuary state directive, law enforcement is not required to cooperate with federal immigration authorities under any circumstances, even in cases where an illegal immigrant has been convicted of a sex crime on U.S. soil. The directive was issued late last year, and went into effect on March 15, 2019.

Pennacchio noted that although his legislation would not have applied in the case of the murderer who was deported this week, it sheds a light on the fact that criminals from abroad are using New Jersey’s sanctuary state policies to find refuge after they commit crimes in a different country, which is why he introduced S-3572 to hold sex offenders who are here illegally accountable for their crimes.

“The Attorney General’s new policies allow criminals who commit dangerous crimes in other countries to hide in plain sight,” Pennacchio said. “We need to do everything we can to ensure local police and federal authorities can work together to deport people who shouldn’t be in our neighborhoods in the first place.”

Related Facebook Post:
https://www.facebook.com/joepennacchionj/posts/10156690577701348

Related Tweet:
https://twitter.com/joepennacchio/status/1108421085442293761

Website Post:
https://www.senatenj.com/index.php/pennacchio/pennacchio-condemns-njs-sanctuary-state-directive-for-protecting-dangerous-criminals/43324