Arpaio to launch immigration and crime sweep

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PHOENIX -- Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio says he will launch his latest crime and immigration sweep on Thursday.

The sheriff's office wouldn't specify which areas of the county that includes Phoenix and its sprawling suburbs deputies will patrol during the sweep.

But Arpaio says he will focus on high-crime areas and target immigrant smugglers and the drop houses where they hide their customers. Since early 2008, Arpaio has conducted 14 crime and immigration sweeps.

Critics say Arpaio's deputies have racially profiled Hispanics during the sweeps.

The sheriff says people pulled over in the patrols were approached because deputies had probable cause to believe they had committed crimes.

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