UPDATE: MCSO East Valley crime sweep wraps up

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UPDATE: Friday at 2 p.m.:

Sheriff Joe is "unpleasantly surprised" that ICE has ordered his deputies to release three individuals arrested during MCSO's latest crime suppression sweep.

The Department of Homeland Security have new directives that police cannot arrest confessed illegal aliens if they have not committed a crime.

CHANDLER, TEMPE, QUEEN CREEK, MESA -- It's day two of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's latest crime suppression sweep. This one will run a total of three day and cover the cities of Chandler, Tempe, Queen Creek and Mesa.


Arpaio plans another crime suppression sweep - Sheriff Joe Arpaio is launching another one of his highly controversial crime suppression sweeps.

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Some 200 Maricopa County deputies were out in force Thursday. By 9 p.m., they had made 48 arrests, twelve of them people suspected of being in the country illegally. Deputies also cleared 10 warrants yesterday, the first day of the three-day sweep.

The concentration is mainly on the Arizona Corridor, a common hangout for day laborers. Video Friday morning showed fewer than usual people out there.

This is Arpaio's 10th such operation, and like the others, it has garnered a good deal of criticism, including allegations of racial profiling. Arpaio, who is facing an investigation by the U.S. Justice Department, denies those allegations. Arpaio said it's his intense efforts to fight illegal immigration that spawned that investigation.

There is one big difference between the current sweep and the previous operation. This time Maricopa County deputies are not the only ones making the arrests. Ten Pinal County sheriff's are also taking part in this sweep.

This sweep is going on despite changes in the wording of the federal 287g program, which allows specially trained local law-enforcement officers to enforce federal immigration laws.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano last week announced new rules for the 287g program, saying that local agencies enforcing federal immigration laws cannot target law-abiding illegal immigrants. The idea is to focus on individuals taking part in criminal acts. Some believe the new wording specifically targets to Arpaio's operations.

That new ruling does not officially kick for 90 days. Arpaio said that until it does, he'll continue conducting his sweeps.

"We have 90 days to look at the new policy," Arpaio said. "We're going to see ... if we are still utilizing our training under the 287g policy."

Chandler Mayor Boyd Dunn said he was disappointed that Arpaio did not give the city a heads up about the operation.

ORIGINAL STORY: Another MCSO crime sweep in southeast Valley

PHOENIX - Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has begun a three-day crime and immigration sweep in southeast metropolitan Phoenix.

Nearly 200 sheriff's deputies and posse volunteers fanned out during the sweeps late Thursday afternoon with help from Pinal County sheriff's deputies.

Arpaio reported 13 arrests in Chandler, Tempe and Mesa. Of those, three involved alleged undocumented immigrants and four were for felony warrants.

Arpaio has run several sweeps throughout the county in the past year to catch illegal immigrants, drawing criticism that deputies were racially profiling people.

The sheriff denies the racial profiling allegation and says a U.S. Justice Department investigation of his office was spurred by his efforts to combat illegal immigration in Maricopa County, which includes Phoenix.

This is the first crime suppression operation in which Arpaio is working with another agency.

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu says he believes Arpaio understands that illegal immigration is the most pressing matter in Arizona.