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DHS Assistant Secretary John Morton discusses his vision for ICE

January 25, 2010

Carnegie Institute for Science, Washington, D.C. 

DHS Assistant Secretary John Morton discusses his vision for ICE

Multimedia Tabs


John Morton, DHS Assistant Secretary for ICE


Doris Meissner, Senior Fellow and Director, U.S. Immigration Policy Program, MPI

Sworn in on May 14, 2009, Assistant Secretary John Morton is the third Homeland Security Assistant Secretary to lead ICE in the agency's six years of existence. At ICE, Morton guides a workforce of more than 19,000 in enforcing U.S. customs and immigration laws and conducting investigations related to cross-border and financial crimes. His agency's mission includes cracking down on human trafficking activities and preventing the illegal movement of weapons and currency from the United States to Mexico.  In heading ICE, Morton has standardized 287(g) agreements with 67 state and local enforcement partners; ordered new workplace audits to hold employers accountable for their hiring practices; announced new initiatives in an effort to reform the immigration detention system; and expanded ICE's Secure Communities initiative -- a partnership with local law enforcement agencies that uses biometrics to identify and remove criminal aliens.
Morton lays out his vision and priorities for ICE and then engages in a discussion with Doris Meissner, Senior Fellow and Director of MPI's U.S. Immigration Policy Program, followed by audience questions. 
Morton began his career in federal service in 1994 and has held a variety of positions within the Department of Justice, including as a trial attorney and Special Assistant to the General Counsel in the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), Counsel to the Deputy Attorney General, Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, Acting Chief of the Domestic Security Section and Senior Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division, and Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the Criminal Division.
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