Immigration authorities arrested more than 160 people throughout Southern California over five days of raids, officials said Friday.
U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement said the “targeted enforcement operation” resulted in arrests of about 150 who had criminal histories. Of the other 10, five had been ordered deported or had been deported in the past.
The raids triggered protests in downtown Los Angeles late Thursday that blocked an entrance to the 101 Freeway.
It also sparked questions from immigrant-rights groups and political leaders who believed it was tied to the new tougher immigration stance of the Trump administration.
“Make no mistake about it: these sweeps are directly linked to President Trump’s ‘new normal’ where criminalizing and dehumanizing immigrants is convenient to violate their due process and facilitate their deportation,” CHIRLA, the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, said.