In response, on November 14, 2014, immigration announced the Civil Immigration Enforcement Priorities. Click here: Civil Immigration Enforcement Priorities. These priorities created concrete system regarding which immigrants, who are removable, will be detained upon contact with immigration and which will not. The list of priorities is long, but here are the basics:
First and highest priority: Removable immigrants with state and federal felony convictions.
Second priority: Removable immigrants with "significant misdemeanor" convictions which include: domestic violence, sexual abuse, burglary, unlawful possession of a firearm, drug trafficking, and, most importantly, DUI.
Third and lowest priority: Aliens with orders of removal from 2014 until the present.
These priority categories do not change or denote who is removable from the country, who is inadmissible, or who ultimately will be deported, but simply who immigration is going to dedicate funds and resources to detain. Other undocumented and removable immigrants not in these categories will, for now, not be detained by immigration and allowed to remain in the United States until a more comprehensive solution for the immigrant population is found.
How do the enforcement priorities interact with aggravated felonies and crimes involving moral turpitude (CIMTs)?
Immigrants with aggravated felonies, found in INA 101(a)(43), fall into Category 1 and will be detained upon contact with immigration.
Much more complicated are CIMTs. Significant misdemeanors overlap with CIMTs but they are not the same. Theft if a CIMT but misdemeanor theft with a sentence of incarceration of less than 90 days is not a significant misdemeanor. DUI is a significant misdemeanor but is not a CIMT. You will most likely need to contact an immigration attorney for immigrants with non-traffic misdemeanor convictions.