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DHS watchdog finds 'egregious violations' at ICE immigrant detention facilities

Posted at 8:16 PM, Jun 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-06 23:16:34-04

(ABC NEWS) — A Homeland Security inspector general report released on Thursday shows U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement failed to meet government standards for housing migrant detainees at multiple facilities last year.

"We observed spoiled and moldy food in kitchen refrigerators, as well as food past its expiration date," the report stated.

At one facility in New Jersey, investigators said the food was "so substandard" that facility managers replaced the kitchen manager in the middle of the inspection.

Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG)Photos are shown from a report released June, 6, 2019, shows U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement failed to meet government standards for housing detainees at multiple facilities last year. At two facilities in California and New Jersey, the investigators said they found "immediate risks or egregious violations of detention standards," including "nooses in detainee cells" and "inadequate medical care."

Expired food and health issues were found at all four facilities mentioned in the report released this week. CNN first obtained details of the report.

Investigators conducted unannounced inspections at the Adelanto ICE Processing Center in California, the LaSalle ICE Processing Center in Louisiana, the Essex County Correctional Facility in New Jersey), and the Aurora ICE Processing Center in Colorado.

ICE agreed with the inspector general’s recommendations and ensured facilities would take "corrective action" in response to the report’s findings.

The newly released report comes on the heels of another Homeland Security oversight investigation that found overcrowded and unsanitary conditions at migrant holding facilities along the border.

In the review of facilities run by Customs and Border Protection, the government watchdog found migrants were kept in "standing-room-only conditions" for days or weeks at a time.

U.S. Border Patrol has been forced to release tens of thousands of migrant families in response to the record levels of migrant crossings seen in recent months. U.S. authorities say most of the arriving migrants have traveled through Mexico from Central American countries including Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.