INS Rebuked on Probe

September 13, 1996

INS Rebuked on Probe

The Washington Post reported today that the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and Claims is angry over the handling of a probe that found 13 INS officials tried to hide detention center overcrowding in Miami from a congressional probe last year.

The Justice Department probe found that, among other problems, 101 of the 407 illegal aliens at Miami's Krome Detention Center were moved out of the center just before a congressional delegation's visit to investigate overcrowding.

Panel members said the punishments the Justice Department recommended for the officials involved were too lenient. The subcommittee also decried the difficulties encountered at INS headquarters when trying to obtain documents related to the investigation and the promotions given to several officials while they were under investigation.

The Justice Department recommended that the three senior INS officials involved receive only 10- to 20-day suspensions. INS Commissioner Doris Meissner, in testifying before the committee, defended the promotions based on the officials' 1994 performance appraisals and said that she took the strongest actions possible after the Justice report came out.

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