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Sessions Says ‘Zero-Tolerance’ Policy May Split Families at Border

A “zero-tolerance” policy toward people who enter the United States illegally may cause families to be separated while parents are prosecuted, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Monday.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said it would refer all arrests for illegal entry to federal prosecutors, throwing its weight behind Sessions’ policy announced last month to vastly expand criminal prosecutions of people with few or no previous offenses. A conviction for illegal entry carries a maximum penalty of six months in custody for first-time crossers, though they usually do far less time, and two years for repeat offenses.

“If you cross the border unlawfully, then we will prosecute you. It’s that simple,” Sessions told reporters on a mesa overlooking the Pacific Ocean, where a border barrier separating San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico, juts out into the ocean.

Read more at PBS

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The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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