Fueled by Soros Money, Philly’s Radical DA Prioritizes Shielding Criminal Aliens from the Law

Press Releases

March 9, 2021

IRLI investigation exposes the anti-borders agenda of Krasner, other district attorneys

WASHINGTON—An investigation by the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) has shed new light on the extremist district attorney of Philadelphia, Larry Krasner, the influence that billionaire George Soros’s money played in his election, and how that support results in protection for criminal aliens accused of violent crimes in Philadelphia and other communities throughout the country.

IRLI looked at a number of district attorneys who were elected with significant financial backing from Soros-funded organizations or Soros directly. Of those, the investigation focused on three district attorneys: Larry Krasner in Philadelphia, Kimberly Foxx in Cook County, Ill., and Diana Becton in Contra Costa County, Calif.

Krasner was elected district attorney in 2017 and received nearly $1.7 million in support from Soros via an independent political action committee (PAC), Philadelphia Justice & Public Safety, that aired pro-Krasner television ads which helped him win the Democratic primary. A filing in 2017 can be found here.

Upon assuming office, Krasner immediately created the new position of Immigration Counsel and hired longtime associate Caleb Arnold, a former immigration attorney. Arnold consulted on approximately 300 cases in the first year with the goal of reaching “immigration neutral” outcomes. Arnold advises prosecutors in cases where the defendant is a non-citizen. Of the roughly 300 cases, 120 were recommended to be changed to plea agreements. Arnold has also published sanctuary policy while in office.

IRLI’s investigation exclusively learned that Arnold has consulted with non-citizen defendants who have been charged with rape, murder, rape of a child, forcible rape, sexual assault, unlawful contact of a minor, attempted murder, among other crimes. Here is one example of Krasner intervening to prevent a non-citizen from deportation. Initially, Philadelphia tried to conceal these charges from IRLI, but the state appeals board overruled Philadelphia and allowed IRLI to obtain and disclose this dangerous information to the public. 

Arnold’s office stated the purpose of the immigration counsel is to reduce “immigration consequences” for non-citizen defendants. Federal law mandates deportation of aliens who are convicted of certain crimes whether or not they are in the country legally. Thus, Arnold’s consulting resulted in non-citizen criminal defendants escaping ICE custody and being deported.  

In its response to IRLI’s request, Krasner’s office revealed that the Immigration Counsel was paid $233,932.41 from January 2018 to November 13, 2020, the date of IRLI’s request. Arnold is the sole employee in the Immigration Counsel’s office.

There is also evidence that the Immigration Counsel office has been deceptive about the type of non-citizens who receive help from the office. Per a local report in March 2019: “In their first year on the job, Arnold said they consulted on approximately 300 cases and recommended changing plea agreements in 120 of them. The remaining cases are either still open, had no immigration consequence, or were too serious to change. Arnold does not consider high-level offenses, such as homicides and sex crimes.”

This raises the question that if Arnold does not consider “high-level offenses, such as homicides and sex crimes,” then why are non-citizens charged with these very crimes on the list that was exclusively obtained by IRLI?

“These are outrageous examples of how our elections are being manipulated by wealthy donors with extreme anti-borders agendas,” said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI. “While these district attorneys claim they are trying to bring justice to our legal system, they are actually putting the residents of their communities at great risk by allowing violent criminals to escape deportation.”  

Krasner’s actions as district attorney are consistent with what has become a clear anti-borders position at the highest levels of Philadelphia city government. Mayor Jim Kenney received national attention and criticism in June 2018 when a video surfaced of him dancing in celebration when a court ruled in favor of the city’s sanctuary policy to shield criminal aliens from deportation. In response to the video, then-Trump White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said, “It’s disgusting the mayor would dance in celebration of a lawless decision that allows these dangerous criminals to roam free in Philadelphia communities and prey on innocent families and children.”

IRLI’s investigation also discovered the following details about Foxx and Becton:

Kimberly Foxx, Cook County, Ill.

Diana Becton, Contra Costa County, Calif.

It has been widely reported that Soros has prioritized critical district attorney races for support in order to advance his extremist left-wing agenda in the United States. While the support is often represented by friendly media as advancing social justice causes, our investigation results show a more radical mission that includes shielding criminal aliens from deportation.

In the cases of Krasner and Foxx, both operated similarly in that they created new positions within their offices that focus on mitigating immigration consequences (i.e., ICE custody, apprehension and deportation) for non-citizen defendants. Given this, IRLI requested similar information for both offices. While Becton did not create an entirely new position, she issued a directive that largely sought the same goals, to mitigate immigration consequences. The metropolitan areas of all three district attorneys in the investigation—Philadelphia, Chicago, and nearby San Francisco—earned positions in 2018 on IRLI’s list of America’s Ten Worst Sanctuary Communities.

For additional information, contact: Brian Lonergan • 202-232-5590 • blonergan@irli.org

Get Connected

Sign up for our email newsletter to stay up to date with immigration reform in the United States.

Attorneys United for a Secure America (AUSA) is a non-partisan affiliation of talented attorneys dedicated to pursuing cases that serve the national interest when it comes to immigration law.

If you are interested in joining the network, visit the AUSA website.