A Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Federal Prosecution of Immigration Crimes (2015, Kit Johnson)

Immigration crimes are the most prosecuted federal crimes in America. This Article examines the benefits of the federal prosecution of immigration crimes (training, deterrence, and signaling/expression) and balances those benefits against the costs of such prosecutions (court-house costs, alternative prosecution, and incarceration). I conclude that deportation immediately following a conviction for an immigration crime appears to capture the key benefit of this system (signaling/expression) while alleviating its greatest expense (incarceration).