These priorities are outlined in the ICE Civil Immigration Enforcement Priorities memorandum of March 2,2011, which this memonmdum is intended to support.
Because the agency is confronted with more administrative violations than its resources can address, the agency must regularly exercise "prosecutorial discretion" ifit is to prioritize its efforts. In basic terms, prosecutorial discretion is the authority of an agency charged with enforcing a law to decide to what degree to enforce the law against a particular individual. ICE, like anyother law enforcement agency, has prosecutorial discretion and may exercise"it in the ordinary course of enforcement1.When ICE favorably exercises prosecutorial discretion, it essentially decides not to assert the full scope ofthe enforcement authority available to the agency in a given case.
In the civil immigration enforcement context, the term "prosecutorial discretion" applies to a
broad range ofdiscretionary enforcement decisions, including but not limited to the
• deciding to issue or cancel a notice ofdetainer;
• deciding to issue, reissue, serve, file, or cancel a Notice to Appear (NTA);
• focusing enforcement resources on particular administrative violations or conduct;
• deciding whom to stop, question, or arrest for an administrative violation;
• deciding whom to detain or to release on bond, supervision, personal recognizance, or other condition;
• seeking expedited removal orother forms ofremoval by means other thana formal removal proceeding in immigration court;
Exercising Prosecutorial Discretion Consistent with the Priorities ofthe Agency for the
Apprehension, Detention, and Removal of Aliens
• settling or dismissing a proceeding;
• granting deferred action, granting parole, or staying a final order ofremoval;
• agreeing to voluntary departure, the withdrawal of an application for admission, or other action in lieu of obtaining a formal order ofremoval;
• pursuing an appeal;
• executing a removal order; and
• responding to or joining in a motion to reopen removal proceedings and to consider joining in a motion to grant relief or a benefit.