WASHINGTON, D.C. (CNN) – Tuesday, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen reiterated comments made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and ICE Deputy Director Thomas Homan.
She said anyone who crosses the U.S. border illegally will be detained and referred to the Department of Justice for prosecution.
“As we seek more funding for our border wall system, our people and the assets we need, I will press forward with tough border security actions and enforcement to the fullest extent of the law,” Nielsen stated. “My message to smugglers, traffickers, and criminals is clear: if you try to enter our country without authorization you have broken the law. The attorney general has declared that we will have zero tolerance for all illegal border crossings and I stand by that. We are a country of laws. It is our policy that anyone crossing the border illegally will be detained and referred for prosecution. We will no longer exempt classes or groups of individuals from prosecution and if they file a fraudulent asylum claim or assist others in doing so they will also referred for prosecution, convicted, and removed from the United States.”
Nielsen was testifying before the Senate Appropriations Committee.