US government deports fewest immigrants in nearly a decade

Migrants sit on the ground arrested by Hungarian police officers and soldiers after they tried to cross the border line between Serbia and Hungary in Roszke, southern Hungary, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Hungary deployed a boxcar bristling with razor wire to close a key border crossing and warned of a new era of swift deportations Monday as governments across Europe debated how to share the burden of housing hundreds of thousands seeking refuge — and whether the continent's hard-won policy of passport-free travel could survive the unrelenting flow of humanity. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

WASHINGTON (AP) – New government figures show deportations of immigrants in the United States illegally have declined for the third consecutive year.

The figures obtained by The Associated Press show that the Obama administration deported just over 231,000 people during the past 12 months ending September 28.

It is the fewest number of immigrants sent home during that time span since 2006. The total is a 42 percent drop since 2012, when President Barack Obama’s immigration authorities hit a record of more than 409,000 deportations.

The administration also deported the fewest criminal immigrants since Obama took office in 2009, despite Obama’s pledge to focus limited resources on finding and deporting criminals living in the country illegally.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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