There were thought to be 85,000 illegal aliens in Minnesota in 2010—slightly more than 1.6% of the state’s population that year. ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) agents investigate crimes committed by those in the country illegally, in addition to investigating American citizens who have committed federal crimes. Crimes of international significance that took place in Minnesota in recent years included two cases of arms smuggling.
Education and Training Required to Become an ICE Agent in Minnesota
Special agents of ICE perform criminal investigations and are frequently involved in the arrest of suspects. The agency has high standards for those who seek careers as ICE criminal investigators. There is an educational requirement that prospective agents have either attended graduate school for a year or have achieved one of several possible marks of distinction for their bachelor’s degree. These can include:
- Having one of the following GPAs for their whole period of study or the final two years:
- A B in all courses
- A B+ in courses for their major
- Having been elected to a national honor society
- Ranking in the top third of their class
Applicants are also required to:
- Be U.S. citizens
- Be younger than 37 (This may not apply to veterans.)
Many applicants already have a background as criminal investigators or in other types of law enforcement. This can substitute for part of the educational requirement. When they have met the requirements, applicants should apply at the USA jobs website when ICE posts positions for criminal investigators. The agency rigorously screens prospective agents and performs a complete background check on them.
Recruits learn how to become an ICE agent through 22 weeks of paid training in Georgia. There, they attend the Federal Law Enforcement Academy and take part in academic courses, physical fitness conditioning, and firearms training.
Residents of Minnesota who want more information on becoming an ICE agent should contact the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) for the state. This agent is in the Twin Cities area and can be reached by calling 952-853-2940.
Crimes Investigated by ICE Agents in Minnesota
ICE special agents have investigated a variety of crimes in Minnesota in recent years. Some of their high-profile cases are described below.
Disrupting International Arms Smugglers – A man from Plymouth pled guilty to smuggling packages of firearms parts and a large quantity of ammunition. US Customs and Borders Protection (CBP) intercepted a number of packages, and an ICE investigation determined that he was responsible. This led to a guilty plea in March 2013.
ICE led an investigation that culminated in the arrest and two year prison sentence for a Minneapolis man in March 2012. He had sent numerous packages to Paraguay through UPS that contained AK-47 parts. The man had supplied enough parts to make 10 rifles.
Stopping the Exploitation of Children – Agents from ICE were involved in a number of cases in 2013 that involved the exploitation of minors. In 2013, a man received a 28 year federal prison sentence for a number of crimes committed in Minnesota that included the following:
- Facilitating prostitution
- Sex trafficking a minor
- Possessing child pornography
In another 2013 case from Minnesota, a man pled guilty to transporting a minor to engage in prostitution. He had taken a 17 year old girl from Minnesota to Colorado Springs to work as a prostitute for him.
Stopping the Smuggling of Illegal Aliens – ICE investigations along with those of local authorities resulted in a 2013 guilty plea by a southern Minnesota man for transporting two illegal aliens from Texas to work at his poultry business.