WA Dept. of Licensing regularly gave drivers' info to immigration authorities: Report

KING 5

Washington's Department of Licensing has been giving residents' personal information to federal immigration-enforcement officers, who used that information to arrest and deport people under the president's immigration policies, reports The Seattle Times.

According to the Times, the agency did this as many as 20 to 30 times a month.

Department spokesman Brad Benfield says the licensing department has been regularly providing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) with photos and driver's license applications.

When it does give the information to ICE, it redacts a field on the driver's license application showing whether someone has a Social Security number, but shows the field where someone was born and the ID used (such as a foreign passport or other documents).

Until questioned by the Times, a spokesperson for Governor Jay Inslee's office said they didn't understand the extent of the cooperation.

“We’ve asked them to stop what they’re doing at this point,” spokeswoman Jaime Smith told the times. 

DOL's practices contradict Inslee's executive order last February that Washington remains a state that "doesn't utilize state employees as agents of federal immigration services," as well as State Attorney General Bob Ferguson's demand for privacy for undocumented immigrants in his suit against Motel 6 over its release of guest lists to federal agents of ICE.

© 2018 KING-TV


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