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What Is an Ice Hold or Ice Detainer?

An ICE hold is a formal request by Immigration and Customs Enforcement for a state or local law enforcement agency to hold a person for 48 hours from the time of their release. In the State of Texas, these requests from the federal government are normally honored.

No judicial warrant is required. Under the latest ICE Policy (April 2017), ICE need only attach its Form I-200 or Form I-205 to its detainer request (ICE Form I-247A). These are forms signed by ICE agents themselves, without any judge reviewing the request like would take place with a standard warrant.

However, the U.S. Constitution applies to all persons subject to the jurisdiction thereof. The Immigration and Nationality Act does not supersede the Texas Constitution or the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. Under state law, a County must “at once set the accused at liberty” upon payment of bond. Tex. Crim. Code § 17.29(a). Pursuant to Texas statute, all arrests generally require a warrant. An ICE Detainer is not a warrant and does not satisfy any statutory exception that would allow a county to deny bail. The county would have to show probable cause to believe that a different criminal offense has been or is being committed or other authority that satisfies Article I, Section 9 of the Texas Constitution.

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You Should Consult an Attorney Prior to Posting a Bond

If you post the bond at the county jail or through a Bail Bondsman, and the person is subject to an ICE hold, then most likely ICE will pick up the person within 48 hours and transfer him or her to the Dallas Field Office located at 8101 N. Stemmons Freeway, Dallas, Texas.

However, you should consult an experienced attorney before posting a bond yourself. There are various reasons why a criminal defendant facing deportation may not wish to post bond the right way, or at all. We will analyze the situation and determine the best course of action.

Before securing someone’s release from State/ County Custody we need to determine the probability that the individual will also be able to secure release from ICE Custody as well.

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Those Not Eligible for Release From Ice Custody

  • Have been convicted of an aggravated felony
  • Can be considered a threat to national security
  • Can be considered a threat to public safety
  • Can be considered a threat to border security
  • Can be considered persons subject to “Mandatory Detention”
  • Have been removed before or ordered removed in absentia

If you post bond and you fall into one of these categories, then more than likely you will have difficulty securing release from ICE. You need the guidance of experienced lawyers to seek any relief that may be available to you.

In such situations, it may be prudent to resolve criminal charges first before being transferred to ICE Custody. Getting criminal charges dismissed, obtaining an acquittal at trial, or resolving the case with a plea bargain that does not have immigration consequences is often the best solution.

Why Would I Have an Ice Detainer?

AN ICE DETAINER/HOLD IS NOT AN ARREST. It is an instrument for the government to hold onto an individual and ensure that they appear before Immigration Court. An Individual normally has an ICE hold because immigration authorities suspect that the person is removable from the United States. However, this doesn’t mean that the person is automatically removable. It just means that immigrants have some reason to believe the person is removable.

Ice Detainers / Holds Do Not Apply to U.S. Citizens

ICE Detainer/Holds DO NOT apply to U.S. Citizens. If you are a U.S. Citizen and you are the subject of an ICE Detainer/Hold, your detention is illegal. Call our office immediately for relief. We will fight for your immediate release. See Our office will file a writ of habeas corpus challenging the government’s detainer. To date, we have won each hearing where we have sought relief.


Securing Release From Ice Custody

If you or a loved one is detained by ICE, we can help locate them and advise them on their rights. We can also make contact with ICE officers and help determine if they are eligible for bond. If ICE does not determine that an individual is eligible then a hearing can be requested before a federal immigration judge. Do not try to navigate this process alone. Contact us today.

When Is It Appropriate to Post a Criminal Bond?

This decision requires the analysis of an experienced attorney on a case-by-case basis. However, persons that are subject to ICE Detainers should generally post a criminal bond when it is highly likely that they can secure release from ICE as well. Generally, persons that will likely be eligible for a bond at ICE are persons that have:

  • Never been removed or ordered removed in absentia
  • Never been convicted of an aggravated felony
  • Never been convicted of an offense that would make them subject to mandatory detention.

Legally, state authorities are not allowed to hold anyone for ICE any longer than 48 hours (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays) from the time that they would otherwise be released.

What If I Am Transferred to Ice Custody?

This is often the case. Once the 48-hour hold has elapsed some will be released from county custody, and others will be transferred to ICE Custody. Typically, in the North Texas area this means that they will be processed at the local ERO located at 8101 N. Stemmons Freeway Dallas, TX for processing. Once processing is complete the individual maybe offered an ICE Bond, and the bond can be made at the ERO. However, sometimes individuals me be transferred to other area detention centers such as:

  • Rolling Plains Detention Center- 118 Co Rd 206, Haskell, TX 79521

Phone: 940-864-6200

  • Johnson County Detention Center-1800 Ridgemar Dr, Cleburne, TX 76031. Phone: 817-556-6000
  • Prairieland Detention Center- 1209 Sunflower Ln, Alvarado, TX 76009

Phone: 817-409-3995

  • Bluebonnet Detention Center – 400 2nd St, Anson, TX 79501

Phone: 325-823-8031

Available 24/7