ATLANTA - Published reports say an unknown number of illegal immigrants have been released from federal detention centers in Georgia, such as the one in Gainesville, in anticipation of automatic spending cuts scheduled to take place effective Friday.
Federal officials announced the action late Tuesday involving detention facilities around the country but gave few specifics as to the number being released and from what facilities. (See separate story.)
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Wednesday, however, that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials have confirmed that some have been released from the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, in west Georgia. That facility, like the one in Gainesville, is operated by Corrections Corporation of America.
ICE officials said the detainees who are being released are under "supervised release" which could include electronic monitoring with ankle bracelets.
The AJC reports that as of Friday, ICE was holding more than 2,000 immigrants at four detention facilities in Georgia - in Gainesville, Atlanta, Lumpkin and Ocilla.