Monday, March 24, 2008

ICE's game: make the immigrant disappear

Now that immigrant detentions are getting so common - and ICE seems to have gotten very good at making people disappear for a long while - it seemed like a good idea to search for where a family could request information on a detainee.

A pro-immigrant advocate sent me a couple of web pages. I also found information from specific detention centers. I searched the main ICE website and there is no listing for a number where families can call. The site had numerous listings of arrests for child pornography. I did find a phone number to report suspicious activity.


"In general, ICE is typically rather uncooperative in giving out info on detained individuals. They do have a hot-line that relatives can call to inquire about their family members. However, it is not uncommon for the disappeared to be completely missing, and to be found or heard from only after deportation weeks or months later.
When contacting ICE, the family member or lawyer would need the full name of the detained, or alien # if the individual has one."*
Detention Watch Network website is
Legal Services of the region :

*thanks to S.O. for providing the above information


The following is from an ICE detention center web page:

If you feel you were mistreated by an immigration employee, or wish to make a complaint of misconduct by an immigration or contract facility employee:

    Call the toll-free Joint Intake Center Hotline at 1-877-2INTAKE

    FAX the JIC at 202-927-4607

    Write to the JIC at P.O. Box 14475, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
    Washington, D.C. 20044

    Send an e-mail message to the JIC at or;

    Contact the DHS/OIG by calling 1-800-323-8603, write to the
    Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C. 20528
    Attn:Office of Inspector General, Hotline; or

    send an email to

Detention: (For questions about those held in detention):

[F]or case status information. Please have the alien registration number to expedite your inquiry.


You may call 1 (800) 870-3676 to have forms mailed to you.

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA):

All FOIA/PA requests (for detainees to obtain certain information in their immigration files) must be submitted on either Form G-639 (Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Request) or in letter format, and contain the original notarized signature of the subject in question. Please complete the Form G-639 thoroughly and if writing a letter, be sure to include your full name, any other names used, date of birth, place of birth, A-number, and your address and telephone number, so that we may contact you if we have any questions.

From another ICE web page related to the Los Angeles Field Office
Family Information on El Salvadorian Detainees in ICE Custody

The safety and well-being of detainees at the Los Angeles Field Office for Detention and Removal Operations is of paramount importance. The need for preventative maintenance of the San Pedro Service Processing Center necessitated the immediate relocation of the detainees to various ICE approved detention facilities. Detainee's family members and/or attorneys are encouraged to call (213) 830-4925 for additional information.

For information on an El Salvadorian detainee housed at another facility, family members and/or attorneys should contact the appropriate Detention and Removal Operations (DRO) field office. ICE personnel will provide the most current information available regarding the location of the individual.”

DRO Field Office Contact Information:


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