Texas governor wants better inmate screen

Nov. 19, 2008 at 4:51 PM
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AUSTIN, Texas, Nov. 19 (UPI) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry has demanded the federal government improve screening of jail inmates to prevent those in the country illegally from being freed.

In a letter sent Tuesday to U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, Perry referred to a Houston Chronicle investigation which found that many illegal immigrants have been released from the Harris County Jail, in some cases going on to commit more crimes.

"Texas has spent the last four years investing unprecedented amounts of state resources to secure our border with Mexico," Perry said. "To now learn that criminal aliens who have been jailed are being released back into our communities by federal authorities who have neglected to secure our border is infuriating and unconscionable."

Several Republican members of the Texas congressional delegation, including U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, joined Perry's call for improve inmate screening.

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