This post contains 2 videos....Sheriff Joe Arpaio...an illegal immigrants worse nightmare!!! Kick some ass Joe!!! Joe..bad to the bone!!
PHOENIX - The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office launched its 16th crime and immigration sweep Thursday in a stretch of desert in the southwestern portion of the county.
Sheriff Joe Arpaio says the one-day sweep was prompted by reports of many drug and immigrant smugglers moving through the Vekol Valley.
Thursday's crime suppression operation took place on the same day as the very first federal hearing regarding Arizona's new immigration law, but Arpaio vehemently denies any significant connection between the two.
"No, it has nothing to do with the hearing. What does a hearing have to do with catching drug traffickers and human smugglers?" Arpaio said.
On Friday, sheriff's deputies said 16 arrests total had been made including seven people being smuggled into the country. The other arrests were for outstanding warrants and traffic violations.
"I would be happy if we didn't arrest anybody because of the fact that our laws and our desert weather act as a deterrent for people to enter our country illegally," Arpaio said. "I will however continue to conduct these types of operations until the flow of illegal immigrants stops completely."
According to an MCSO press release, approximately 100 sworn deputies and posse members were called in to help patrol the region.
MCSO spokesperson Brian Lee said Arpaio also ordered the deployment of a belt-fed .50 caliber machine gun to be on site during the operation. Officials reportedly did not anticipate the need to use the weapon, but Lee said recent reports of violence in the desolate desert areas justify bringing the weapon along to ensure deputies' safety.
"I want to send a message to these criminal traffickers that we will not be intimidated by reports claiming that traffickers are better equipped than our law enforcement officers," Arpaio said in a statement Thursday. "We have the machine guns too and we will not hesitate to use them if the situation calls for it."
Since early 2008, Arpaio has launched patrols that seek out traffic violators and arrest other offenders, such as people accused of human smuggling.
Critics say officers racially profile Latinos in the patrols. Arpaio denies the allegations, saying people pulled over in the sweeps are approached because deputies have probable cause to believe they committed crimes.
Arpaio told ABC15 he is planning a surprise crime suppression operation in the near future and would not provide any details.
The next planned sweep is set to take place July 29th, the same day Senate Bill 1070 is scheduled to take effect.
courtesy of Arizona_Patriot
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