Fourteen people were detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, at the Days Inn in Colchester, according to Will Lambek, spokesperson for Migrant Justice.
The arrests occurred Thursday at 5am, as first reported by VTDigger.
Lambek says the 14 people were working on a construction project in Chittenden County and were staying together at the hotel.
Lambek calls it the largest immigration raid he has seen in Vermont.
“While its size makes it somewhat of an outlier in Vermont, it’s certainly part of a trend of increasing arrests of immigrant Vermonters by ICE and Border Patrol,” he said.
Most of the detainees are being held at the Strafford County House of Corrections in New Hampshire, pending deportation proceedings.
However, some are still in Vermont also being held on illegal reentry charges because they allegedly came back into the country after being deported, according to Lambek.
“I think it’s relevant in terms of what’s happening in national news around immigration negotiations as they relate to the appropriations bill and government shutdown because essentially what republicans are trying to do right now is ransom the fate of the DREAMers to tying it to increase money for deportation,” said Lambek. “The White House and the Republicans of Congress are trying to get more money so they can do more raids and more immigration arrests, separate more families because of deportation.”
Due to the government shutdown, Local 22 & Local 44 News was unable to reach an ICE representative.