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ATLANTA (AP) - According to Immigration and Customs Enforcement records, the number of deportations from Georgia and the Carolinas has dropped over the past three years.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reportedSunday that ICE officials in Atlanta, who are responsible for the region, ordered about 14,740 removals in fiscal year 2013, which ended in September. The newspaper reports that the number of removals is down from 2011, when nearly 23,000 people were deported.

According to ICE records, federal officials have reported more deportations from border states, and the percentage of deportations involving criminals increased to 59 percent in 2013 from 55 percent in 2012.

In 2011, the Obama administration announced it was shifting focus to deporting recent border crossers, serious criminals and people who posed threats to national security.