Three people convicted of terror-related offenses after 9/11 were given U.S. citizenship later, outraging Rep. Steve King, the Republican chairman of the House subcommittee that deals with immigration. “It’s outrageous that you can have people under your very nose and adjudicate them through the process and convict them and then turn around and grant them citizenship,” King told CNS News.
The unidentified trio were all granted U.S. citizenship under the Obama administration, two in 2009 and one in 2010, according to federal auditors.
They were caught up in an investigation involving “an identified link to international terrorism,” said the report from the Government Accountability Office. “But they were charged with violating other statutes, including fraud, immigration, drugs, false statements, and general conspiracy charges.”
Two were convicted of “unlawful production of an identity document” and the other of breaking sanctions by transferring funds out of the country. The offenses are referred to as “Category II” terror-related cases.
King is calling for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to conduct background checks for all applicants for citizenship. “Nobody should be getting citizenship that has been adjudicated in this fashion. It’s something that we’re going to have to take up with” the immigration agency, he said.
King said he is in the business of making sure immigration laws are enforced. “We have those laws for a reason – it’s about national security,” the Iowa congressman said.
“When you think of all the things that we went through after September 11 to try to put security in place so that we can protect this nation from terrorists and then to find out that we are granting them citizenship – it is something that America should not tolerate and the patience level of the American people should have been worn thin a long time ago on these kind of mistakes.”