SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota, has voiced his concern after a large operation that targeted sexual predators entering the country illegally was ended.
The program, known as “Operation Talon,” had been recently launched by the Trump administration and Buchanan has sent a letter to the secretary of Homeland Security and director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) asking why it was cancelled by the Biden administration just weeks after it was launched.
The program was designed to find and deport any illegal immigrants with a criminal record of assault against women or children.
“Canceling this program makes absolutely no sense and sends the wrong message,” said Buchanan, co-chair of the Florida congressional delegation. “If you are in this country illegally and have a history of sex convictions, you should be a high priority for our law enforcement agencies.”
The congressman noted that 18 state attorneys general, including Florida’s, have sent similar letters requesting that President Biden reinstate the program.
“America should not be viewed as a sanctuary country to these criminals,” said Buchanan, who has introduced several bills protecting women and children from predators, including the Human Trafficking and Exploitation Prevention Training Act. “It’s unclear whether the cancellation of “Operation Talon” was intentional or collateral damage in your softening of immigration enforcement, but regardless the program needs to be reinstated. The administration owes the country an explanation for this decision and it should reverse the action to show that it is serious in addressing these types of heinous crimes.”