New York City is the safest big city in America because of – not in spite of – our thriving immigrant communities. We believe these men, women, and children are full-fledged New Yorkers, whether they are documented or undocumented under federal law. Regardless of your immigration status, we are here to protect your safety and your rights.
Frauds Targeting the Immigrant Community
Too often, members of immigrant groups fall victim to theft, fraud, and other acts at the hands of criminals. These individuals target those seeking residency, citizenship, or legal services and offer assistance in exchange for large sums of money or personal identifying information, sometimes without providing promised services at all. Undocumented immigrants—who may fear cooperation with law enforcement due to their immigration status—are particularly vulnerable to exploitation related to their employment, wages, and housing.
We are firmly committed to protecting immigrant New Yorkers with a team of dedicated prosecutors keenly focused on immigration fraud and a suite of programs and services tailored to our diverse immigrant population. We provide community education and outreach on potential scams and tips to avoid victimization. We operate two satellite offices—in Harlem and in Washington Heights—to better connect Upper Manhattan residents to staff and resources. And we manage an immigrant affairs hotline where victims can safely and anonymously report crime.
Keeping Our Courts Safe and Accessible
We owe our safety in great part to our thriving immigrant communities, and to efforts by New York state and local authorities over many years to earn their trust. Deporting New Yorkers who show up to court is antithetical to our values and detrimental to our public safety. The fear of unjust deportation stops crime victims from coming forward, and stops defendants from responsibly attending their court dates. We are proud to support the Protect Our Courts Act so that undocumented immigrants can once again feel safe coming to court, and helping us take criminals off our streets.
Preventing Unnecessary Deportation for Low-Level Offenses
In our current immigration climate, our office recognized the need to develop in-house expertise in immigration law and ongoing federal enforcement trends. Our Collateral Consequences Counsel – the first in the nation – helps ADAs assess the immigration consequences of our plea and charging decisions, and advise on available dispositions which reduce or eliminate an individual’s risk of deportation. By doing so we not only prevent unnecessary or unfair deportations, but foster collaboration between immigrant communities and law enforcement.
- D.A. Vance: Phony “State Department Special Agent” Pleads Guilty to Stealing From Undocumented New Yorkers
- Statement by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., on Indictment of Suspended Immigration Attorney Carlos Moreno
- DA Vance: Jose Panchana Pleads Guilty to Stealing Thousands of Dollars From Immigrant Job Seekers