Immigration agents have not arrested any non-criminal immigrants in the Houston area in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, an agency spokesman told NBC News.
The suspension of arrests is a step beyond the promise made by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) ahead of the storm. On Friday, the agency said "routine non-criminal immigration enforcement operations will not be conducted at evacuation sites, or assistance centers such as shelters or food banks."
"Our priority in the hurricane-stricken areas is saving lives," ICE said in a statement. "While we’re not conducting immigration enforcement in affected areas, we will not allow criminal enterprises to take advantage of the situation, and ICE personnel will remain vigilant toward such activities."
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Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Wednesday that people in need were not being asked to produce their papers.