The following story appeared in FAIR’s June 12 Legislative Update. To subscribe to FAIR’s Legislative Update click here.

In the latest phase of the Obama Administration’s backdoor amnesty scheme, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) attorneys last week began reviewing more than 18,000 pending deportation cases in San Francisco, California. (San Jose Mercury News, June 5, 2012)

Under the review, the Administration will administratively close — or otherwise ignore — any pending or incoming immigration case it does not deem a priority for immigration enforcement. (See Letter from DHS Secretary Napolitano to Harry Reid, Aug. 18, 2012)

Thus far, ICE has reviewed over 288,000 cases pending removal. Of those reviewed, ICE plans to administratively close 20,648. Over 4,300 of these cases have already been processed and the remaining will be closed pending background checks. (See case-by-case review statistics here, June 8, 2012; see also New York Times, June 6, 2012) The Administration had offered an additional 3,998 illegal and criminal aliens prosecutorial discretion, but they declined the offer. Nonetheless, the Administration has gone on to grant a majority of them work authorization. (Id.)

The number of illegal and criminal aliens granted administrative amnesty as a result of the review has almost tripled in the last few months. As of March 5, ICE had administratively closed or dismissed roughly 1,600 cases and had deemed an additional 11,000 eligible for closure. (See ICE email, Mar. 9, 2012)

The latest ICE statistics also reveal that the agency has reviewed approximately 111,000 incoming cases for prosecutorial discretion. It claims, however, that it is still determining the number of cases actually closed. (See case-by-case review statistics, June 8, 2012)

ICE has already reviewed pending deportation cases in New York, Detroit, Seattle, New Orleans, Orlando, Baltimore, and Denver. (FAIR Legislative Update, Apr. 2, 2012) It expects to complete the review of San Francisco’s pending cases by June 15, 2012, and then moves to the Los Angeles docket in July. (San Jose Mercury News, June 5, 2012; Huffington Post, Mar. 30, 2012)