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ICE seeks to implement Rapid DNA testing to identify fraudulent claims of family relationships

  1. Date Announced

    May 28, 2019

    ICE issues an RFP for contract to administer rapid DNA tests at seven border locations to identify fraudulent claims of familial relationships by migrants. The program is called "Operation Double Helix 2.0"; proposals are due by June 3, 2019. No more than 50,000 tests will be administered during the "contract base period," and another 50,000 could be administered during a later "option one period."

    The government asserts that it retains authority to conduct Rapid DNA testing from 8 U.S.C. § 1357(b), which allows ICE to “take and consider evidence concerning the privilege of any person to enter, reenter, pass through, or reside in the United States.” However, this statute generally has applied to “evidence” such as inspecting entry documents, not conducting DNA testing. [ID #402]

    View Policy Document
  2. Effective Date of Change

    May 28, 2019
  3. Subsequent Action

    June 18, 2019

    ICE announces 120-day extension of the rapid DNA testing pilot program and expansion to five additional locations along the southwest border to assess long-term implementation. ICE awards a 10-month contract to Bode Cellmark Forensics Inc., with a total value of $5.2 million, to carry out the expansion.

    ICE News Release
Status: Final/Actual
Type of Action: Agency Directive
Subject Matter: Border Detention
Agencies Affected: CBP ICE

Subsequent Action

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