Two rapists and a murderer were among foreign offenders and troublemakers deported by the Government from Derbyshire, new figures reveal.
The crackdown in the county by Derbyshire police squad Operation Advenus, which investigates cases for referral to the Home Office and the Immigration Service, has been revealed.
In total Derbyshire police referred 132 foreign nationals, the majority of them criminals, for consideration to be deported.
As well as 44 that were removed, 11 are currently wanted, 26 people did not meet the criteria for deportation, three are in an immigration centre waiting to be deported, one was referred by another force and one has died.
A decision is still being made on 46 others.
Investigations are carried out on foreign nationals once they are arrested for offences in the county by police squad Operation Advenus, which was established in 2015.
Since then, among the most dangerous offenders deported are two rapists and a murderer who were discovered to be living in the county. They have all since been deported.
The head of the unit, Detective Sergeant Stuart Kershaw, said Derbyshire police run checks on all offenders and have to check foreign nationals under arrest to keep communities safe.
He said: "There was a Polish man whose dog had bitten someone. The dog then bit the same man again. He was arrested for having a dangerous dog and we ran checks on him. It came back to say he had a conviction for rape. He was subsequently arrested and deported.
"In March, we ran checks on a man who had been arrested in Derby for assault and threatening his girlfriend. Our background checks showed he had a conviction for a horrific rape in his home country. He was arrested and then deported.
"In December 2016, we came across a foreign national who had no insurance on his car. We ran our checks and found that he was a convicted murderer in his home country. He had served his sentence but had moved over here. We managed to get him deported."
Detective Sergeant Kershaw said another example was that of a European man causing problems in Derbyshire. He added: "He was living in Ilkeston and stealing from parking meters to fund his anti-social lifestyle. He was removed from the UK on the basis that he was doing more harm than good."
The specialist team of one sergeant, four constables and one police staff member carry out checks for every arrested foreign national dealt with by Derbyshire police.
A spokesman for the Home Office said all passengers arriving in the UK at passport control were checked against police, security and immigration watch lists on arrival at the border. He said that, when the Home Office is aware of individuals who pose a risk, border force officers "can — and do — refuse them entry."
Det Sgt Kershaw added: "The operation was set up in 2015 to look at the risk and threat posed by foreign nationals in Derbyshire.
"We find criminals and get rid of criminals. We conduct checks from countries all over the world, from China, Japan, Australia, Iraq and Syria. We've had some good successes since we launched.
"Derbyshire police runs checks on all criminals, regardless of nationality. If you ran the same checks we did on the British community in the same way then you would find exactly the same results. It's no different.
"The checks we do have to be done though. It's all based on protecting our communities from harm."
He said: "When we conduct checks within the EU the standard response is within 10 working days. Outside of Europe and it's pot luck. The process can be frustrating but there's nothing you can do. That's how it works. We have to live with it."
The Home Office spokesman added: "The majority of these are checked against our systems before they even travel, through the collection of advanced passenger information (API). API helps protect the UK against terrorist attacks, serious cross-border crime and abuses of the immigration system."