17th immigrant dies in ICE custody, double last fiscal year
More than twice as many immigrants have died in the custody of Immigration and Customs and Enforcement this fiscal year than last after two detainees died this week. That brought this year’s total to 17, compared with eight deaths last year.
A 72-year-old Canadian man died in ICE custody on Wednesday night at a Virginia hospital, the agency said Friday in a statement.
No additional information about the death was immediately available; ICE said details were still being confirmed and necessary notifications being made. The death was first reported by BuzzFeed News.
A 51-year-old Taiwanese man died Wednesday afternoon at a Florida hospital after being a diagnosed with a “massive intercranial hemorrhage,” ICE said in a separate statement Thursday.
Kuan Hui Lee was found unresponsive at the Krome Service Processing Center in Florida on July 31 and taken to the Kendall Regional Medical Center.
Lee was arrested by Border Patrol in January after legally entering the U.S. in 2004 and overstaying his temporary visa.
ICE said it was committed to the health and welfare of all those in its custody and was undertaking a comprehensive, agency-wide review of Lee’s death.
The agency said it had notified the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General, the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility and the Taiwan consulate.
Immigration centers, like other detention centers throughout the U.S., have reported outbreaks of the coronavirus. There have been nearly 4,200 confirmed coronavirus cases in ICE custody since the agency began testing in February, according to agency data. There were currently 917 positive coronavirus cases in ICE custody as of Wednesday, according to the agency.
NBC News – Daniella Silva