James Schwab, the spokesman for ICE in San Francisco resigned this week over false and misleading information being disseminated by the agency and by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “I just couldn’t bear the burden — continuing on as a representative of the agency and charged with upholding integrity, knowing that information was false,” Schwab told CNN.
Acting ICE Director Tom Homan and Attorney General Jeff Sessions both repeated false information claiming that more than 800 dangerous immigrants were spared from apprehension when Oakland’s mayor warned of impending ICE activity in her city. In February, Sessions denounced the mayor saying:
“Those are 800 wanted criminals that are now at large in that community — 800 wanted criminals that ICE will now have to pursue with more difficulty in more dangerous situations, all because of one mayor’s irresponsible action.”
Schwab said that the statements were misleading because; “we never pick up 100% of our targets. And to say they’re a type of dangerous criminal is also misleading.”
Schwab told CNN that when he complained about being asked to purvey incorrect statements, he was told to “deflect to previous statements. Even though those previous statements did not clarify the wrong information. I’ve never been in this situation in 16 almost 17 years in government where someone asked me to deflect when we absolutely knew something was awry — when the data was not correct”