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Immigration in the Rockies
By Nichole Szemerei for KULR8, April 14, 2008

MONTANA - A recent report released this year on "Immigration in the Rockies" studied the rate at which immigrants are arriving to the eight state Rocky Mountain Region. These states include Montana, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming.

The report says immigrants arrive to the Rockies at twice the rate of the nation as a whole. From 2000 to 2005 the regional immigrant population rose 27%, versus 16% nationwide. Also, six of the eight states rank in the highest of unauthorized foreign-born residents from 40-54%.

About two-thirds of immigrants in the Rockies are Hispanic, but more than 60% of Hispanics in the region are not immigrants. There is not a single state in the Rockies in which the immigrant Hispanic population outnumbers the native Hispanic population.
Other Side of Immigration
By Arianne Rapkoch for KULR8, March 2, 2008

BILLINGS - Immigration is one of the most controvorsial topics facing Americans today. After the sting at the Cennex refinery a few weeks ago, there was a great deal of community reaction and concern about illegal immigrants in Montana. One local woman has a very personal connection to this issue. Tracy Rios Gomez has strong opinions on immigration laws in this country. She's become an expert on the issues, not from study, but from personal experience. Tracy Rios Gomez's husband Francisco was deport in January of 2007 after he was pulled over for running a red light. Tracy was seven months pregnant when she said goodbye to him in Mexico. She says, "I'm pretty much raising our son as a single mother even though I'm married." Since then, they've been wrapped-up in red tape. Tracy says, "because of his unlawful entry he's not eligible for a Visa." That means they have to go through a Visa interview, get rejected, then file for a waiver and hope for the best.
Drug conviction nets 17-year prison sentence for illegal immigrant
By the AP, 2/17/08

BILLINGS - An illegal immigrant who was twice deported will spend 17 1/2 years in federal prison for trafficking drugs.

Chief U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull sentenced 35-year-old Hector Contreras, who earlier pleaded guilty to all 10 counts in two indictments. The charges included conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute cocaine, meth and marijuana.

In sentencing Friday, Cebull found Contreras to be a supervisor or manager of the scheme that brought drugs from California to Billings.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Seykora said Contreras pleaded guilty to get credit for taking responsibility, but did not cooperate with investigators.
Car registration crackdown leads to arrest of illegal immigrants
By the AP, 2/13/08

LAUREL - An effort to crack down on refinery workers in Laurel who had not registered their vehicles in Montana led to the arrest of several suspected illegal immigrants.

The Yellowstone County sheriff's office arrested nine suspected illegal immigrants Monday, including a 15-year-old boy, Sheriff Chuck Maxwell said. They were jailed in Billings and Boulder.

Nine citations were issued Monday to workers who had not registered their vehicles in Montana and four more were issued Tuesday. Others received warnings. Maxwell said deputies planned to return to the plant Wednesday night, as well.