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Posted on October 10, 2016 in Crime

States With the Most Undocumented Immigrants

It is clear that undocumented immigrants continues to be common in the United States and it is a topic of considerable political debate. Republican nominee Donald Trump has made illegal immigration a cornerstone of his campaign, pledging to deport and keep out all undocumented immigrants. Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton vows to to take a different approach and proposed a path to full and equal citizenship.

A 2014 report indicated that there are 11.1 million unauthorized immigrants in America, which makes up 4% of the U.S.  population.  Six states account for 59% of unauthorized immigrants, and it seems that there are selective states that continue to see higher numbers of illegal immigrants. Craig Orent, a Phoenix criminal lawyer announces the top 10 states in America with the highest number of undocumented immigrants. For more information, contact our office today for a free consultation.

#1: California

California’s estimated number of undocumented immigrants is 3,034,000 people. About 2,114,000 of these immigrants are from Mexico. Others are from Guatemala (200,000), El Salvador (111,000), and the Philippines (88,000). California has laws that protect immigrants without proper documentation.

#2: Texas

With 1,464,000 undocumented immigrants, Texas has the second-highest number in the country. The vast majority of these immigrants (1,138,000) claim Mexico as their home country. Unauthorized Mexican citizens don’t have far to travel to cross the border into Texas, as is the case with California as well.

#3: New York

New York is currently home to about 867,000 undocumented immigrants. Asian undocumented immigrants represent about 10% of all undocumented immigrants in the United States. NY has about 71,000 unauthorized immigrants from China. The majority (186,000) is from Mexico.

#4: Florida

With about 605,000 undocumented immigrants residing in Florida, this state rests at number four. The majority (171,000) is from Mexico, followed by Guatemala (66,000), Colombia (46,000), and Honduras (43,000). Florida has a special policy for Cuban immigrants that allows them to apply for legal status after only one year.

#5: Illinois

With an estimated undocumented immigrant population of about 519,000, Illinois is number five on the list. Illinois is home to mostly Mexican unauthorized immigrants (373,000), with the remainder from home countries including India, Guatemala, and China. In 2014, Illinois passed a law that allows residents to receive kidney transplants regardless of their legal status.

#6: New Jersey

New Jersey has a higher number of South Korean, Columbian, Honduran, Peruvian, and El Salvadoran undocumented immigrants than many other states on the list. New Jersey has 509,000 total undocumented immigrants, and the majority (109,000) is from Mexico. New Jersey’s Ellis Island is a historic gateway for immigrants into the United States, responsible for processing more than 12 million immigrants during its 62 years in operation.

#7: Georgia

With 393,000 undocumented immigrants, Georgia holds the seventh spot on the list. The majority of these immigrants come from Mexico (220,000), followed by Guatemala (32,000), and India (15,000).

#8: North Carolina

North Carolina has about 342,000 undocumented immigrants. A highly publicized immigration incident from earlier this year involved a high school student in NC. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement deported Wildin Guillen Acosta, an undocumented immigrant from Honduras. His deportation led to weeks of community protests.

#9: Arizona

With 264,000 undocumented immigrants to date, Arizona holds the ninth spot on the list. Arizona passed the controversial Senate Bill 1070 that allows law enforcement officers to pull over motorists on the assumption that the suspect may be an undocumented immigrant. This “show-me-your-papers” ordinance reflects the severity of immigration problems in Arizona. In the Supreme Court case Arizona v. United States, the courts overturned most of the provisions in Senate Bill 1070.

A profile of the undocumented population in Arizona shows that the top country of birth for immigrants in the state without authorization is Mexico (86%), at around 211,000. Another 3% is from Guatemala and 1% from India. Arizona’s tough anti-immigration laws have caused trouble among the state’s farmers, who are now missing many migrant families that used to work as field hands. At the same time, many say the new laws have led to native Arizonians getting jobs and raises.

#10: Virginia

With an undocumented immigrant population of 247,000 people, Virginia is the 10th state on the list. In 2007, Prince William County passed a law that requires police officers to establish the citizenship of anyone who is arrested. This ordinance has led to the discovery – and in some cases, deportation – of undocumented people living in Virginia. The ordinance continues to be on the books today.