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Immigration Enforcement Essentials  

This course will give you a broad understanding of state and federal immigration laws and their application at the local level. You will learn how to determine if an immigrant has legal status in the U.S, what documentation they should possess, and whether that paperwork is valid, expired, or falsified. You will also learn about the federal agencies involved in the enforcement of U.S. immigration laws and what to do when an illegal alien has been identified.

We will begin by discussing the differences between an immigrant, a non-immigrant, and an alien who is illegally in the country. We will explain certain tools and information sources that can be used in the field in order to make a proper determination of an alien’s U.S. immigration status. In recent years the term “undocumented” has become synonymous with “illegal alien”, so time will be spent discussing documentary requirements for all legal aliens residing or visiting the U.S. (including passports, visas, “Green Cards”, and many other forms of travel and identification documents.) In addition, you will learn how to determine if certain travel documents are valid or not by observing basic coded biographic information and internationally recognized security features.

We will discuss how to deal with foreign nationals while avoiding accusations of racial profiling. And, in cooperation with our international law enforcement partners, you will learn how to recognize signs of human trafficking and alien smuggling, and how to assist individuals who have been victimized by these criminal activities.

This course will be presented by former INS, ICE, and U.S. Border Patrol Agents. The instructors have significant immigration law enforcement experience working our international borders, in major U.S. cities, and at U.S. Embassies abroad.

Topics include:

  • Determining legal vs. illegal immigration status
  • Passport, visas, and other international travel and identification documents
  • The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) machine readable zone
  • The Law Enforcement Support Center and other available resources
  • Working in an immigrant community
  • Alien smuggling and human trafficking
  • S-Visas, T-Visas, and U-Visas


Enrollment in this course is limited to duty law enforcement. This course is not intended to convey or authorize any detention or arrest authority.


Patrol officers and their supervisors, investigators and their supervisors, prosecutors and jail in-take personnel

Course Length

16 hours


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