Nearly 40 illegal immigrants hired by contractors working on three military bases in Georgia, Virginia and Nevada were arrested over the last three days by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, the agency said Friday.
In the largest arrest, 21 illegal immigrant workers were charged with identity theft and immigration violations for attempting to enter Fort Benning, Georgia, said agency spokesman Richard Rocha. They were among 24 workers arrested Wednesday while trying to enter the base to do construction work on soldiers' barracks. The three workers who are not facing criminal charges will be placed in immigration removal proceedings.
Similar raids at military installations in Nevada and Virginia on Thursday also netted 18 other arrests, Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman Marc Raimondi said.
One of those arrested, a Nicaraguan man employed by a company doing construction at Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs, Nevada, was a member of MS-13, which the government considers one of the most dangerous gangs in the U.S., Raimondi said. None of the others arrested posed a direct security threat, Raimondi said, though he added that it is critical that authorities have real identifications for those entering military bases.