Alaska Justice Forum 20(1), Spring 2003

The Spring 2003 issue of the Alaska Justice Forum focuses on immigration, with articles on operations of the former Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) in Alaska (FY 1999–20010 and immigration court in Anchorage (1993–2002), the immigration consequences of criminal convictions, the reorganization of INS under the new Department of Homeland Security, and noncitizens among Anchorage arrestees.

"Immigration and Naturalization Operations in Alaska"

Since 1980 there have been over twenty-five pieces of federal legislation affecting immigration and naturalization, including comprehensive acts passed in 1986, 1990 and 1996 and the national security legislation passed after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The overall effect of the legislation of the past two decades has been to place heightened controls on admission to the U.S. and to broaden the powers of law enforcement agencies in arresting and detaining foreigners. The data in this article cover the operations of the former Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) in Alaska from FY 1999 through FY 2001, with additional information on INS detention operations through FY 2002. A sidebar story discusses international students in Alaska.

"Immigration Court in Alaska 1993–2002"

The Anchorage immigration court handles cases from throughout the Alaska, which is part of a jurisdiction also encompassing Washington, Montana, and Idaho. Judges for this area are based in Seattle, and an immigration judge travels to Alaska several times each year for a week to hear individual cases. This article provides an overview of the structure and operation of the immigration court in Anchorage from 1993 to 2002, prior to and during the reorganization of the Immigration and Naturalization Serivce (INS) in 2002-2003.

"Immigration Consequences of Criminal Convictions" by Robin Bronen

Any person who is not a United States citizen, including lawful permanent residents, can be deported because of a criminal conviction. This article provides information on the possible consequences of criminal convictions upon immigrants, including deportation; possible remedies for deportation; and examples of deportation cases in Alaska involving criminal convictions.

"Reorganization of INS"

The former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), which had been part of the U.S. Department of Justice, held responsibility for both enforcing immigration laws and preventing illegal entries to the U.S., as well as facilitating legal immigration and the naturalization process. With the emergence of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, INS was moved into the new department, and its missions and functions were split, renamed, and divided among separate bureaus with different reporting lines. This article describes the reorganization of immigration functions into DHS as of early 2003, when reorganization was still in process.

"Non-Citizens Among Anchorage Arrestees" by Brad Myrstol

Immigrants to the United States—both noncitizens and those who have assumed citizenship—form a low percentage of the Anchorage arrestee population, substantially less than their representation in Anchorage's population as a whole. Moreover, non-citizen arrestees in Anchorage are not significantly more likely to have been jailed for a felonious crime, a violent offense, or a drug offense, and are less likely than those with citizenship to have prior criminal histories.

"Departure From Justice Center"

Lisa Rieger has resigned from her position as an associate professor with the Justice Center to accept a position as an attorney with CIRI.