The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has been allowing illegal immigrants to fly without providing any forms of identification, a new report says.
Since December 2018, TSA has permitted illegal immigrants released from custody to board domestic flights without having any of 15 forms of identification typically required for airline travel, the Washington Examiner reported exclusively on Thursday.
A TSA spokesperson told the Washington Examiner that illegal immigrants could fly without identification as long as they provided Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Form I-862, the “Notice to Appear” form that is provided to immigrants who have applied for asylum, passed a credible fear assessment, and could wait up to five years for a federal judge to decide their case.
The form can serve as identification because it is only issued after a background check has been conducted on the applicant while in federal custody, the spokesperson noted.
The TSA’s website lists 15 forms of identification acceptable to travel, which are:
- Driver’s licenses or other state photo identity cards issued by Department of Motor Vehicles (or equivalent)
- U.S. passport
- U.S. passport card
- DHS trusted traveler cards (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST)
- U.S. Department of Defense ID, including IDs issued to dependents
- Permanent resident card
- Border crossing card
- DHS-designated enhanced driver’s license
- Federally recognized, tribal-issued photo ID
- HSPD-12 PIV card
- Foreign government-issued passport
- Canadian provincial driver’s license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card
- Transportation worker identification credential
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card (I-766)
- U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential
However, form I-862 is not listed as an acceptable form of identification, and it isn’t provided until 180 days after approval of a credible fear claim.
A U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) official told the Washington Examiner that Form I-862’s sole purpose is to tell applicants when to appear in court, and it cannot authorize applicants to travel.
“TSA accepts identification documentation issued by other government agencies, which is validated through the issuing agency. All passengers are then subject to appropriate screening measures,” the TSA said in a statement to Washington Examiner.
Republican Rep. Steve King tweeted Wednesday, “Illegals enter the U.S. every day with no ID. Until recently, DHS didn’t even finger print those under 14 but has flown illegals of all ages to every state. No way they all have valid ID’s. If fly commercial, TSA has to be waiving the valid ID requirement.”
Illegals enter the U.S. every day with no ID. Until recently, DHS didn’t even finger print those under 14 but has flown illegals of all ages to every state. No way they all have valid ID’s. If fly commercial, TSA has to be waiving the valid ID requirement. https://t.co/owz7qPSyJq
— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) June 5, 2019
Illegal immigrants may have used Form I-862s as identification for travel since 2014.
In 2014, Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council Shawn Moran told KFOX14 that border patrol agents had observed TSA agents accepting the I-862 form and allowing the immigrants to fly.
“These documents are easily reproduced on any type of copier or home computer, they have no photographs, so there’s really no way to verify that the person holding them is actually who they say they are,” Moran told KFOX14 at the time. “We’re just concerned that the commercial transportation system could be exploited by somebody claiming to be another person.”