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Baker, Cahill: Patrick Delaying Immigration Checks

This article is more than 9 years old.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Charles Baker says Gov. Deval Patrick is "immensely soft" on crime for delaying enrollment in a controversial program that automatically checks the immigration status of people arrested.

Independent candidate Timothy Cahill is also complaining about the delay. He says that with the state facing a $2 billion budget deficit, it can't "afford to incur any more costs from criminal aliens."

Patrick says he supports the intent of the so-called "Secure Communities" program.

And state Public Safety Secretary Mary Beth Heffernan says she's monitoring a pilot program in Boston and will make a recommendation to Patrick "in due course."

The program checks arrestees' fingerprints against FBI criminal records and Department of Homeland Security biometrics-based immigration records.

Immigrant advocates say it discourages crime reporting.

This program aired on September 23, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.

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