Trump orders firing of Secret Service chief

Director of the United States Secret Service Randolph Alles meets with guests before speaking at the Atlanta Press Club in Atlanta Feb. 1 2018

US Secret Service director Randolph "Tex" Alles is the latest administration official to get the boot as the president prepares to assemble a team that takes an even harder line on immigration.

Trump has selected Secret Service Agent James Murray to replace Alles in May.

A law enforcement official told Fox News that, inside the agency, the news of Alles' departure came as a surprise.

The Secret Service director reports directly to the secretary of homeland security, Kirstjen Nielsen, who was forced out on Sunday following months of pressure from Trump, who blamed her for the recent surge in family migrations at the southern border.

Alles, a former US Marines general, was recommended to lead the secret service by former White House chief of staff John Kelly, also a former Marines general.

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On Friday, Trump confirmed he had withdrawn the nomination of acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director Ron Vitiello to become the permanent head of the agency, telling reporters that "Ron's a good man, but we're going in a tougher direction, we want to go in a tougher direction". The announcement of his departure comes a day after the ouster of DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen. Alles was told that he should be prepared to leave his post as head of the Secret Service as part of that transition.

There was no official explanation why he may have been asked to leave.

Alles reportedly was told to pack it in before the March 30 security breach at Mar-a-Lago, in which a Chinese woman with a flash drive containing malware and four cellphones bluffed her way into Trump's posh resort.

CNN also reported that there could be additional high-level removals at DHS in what one unnamed source described as a "purge".

(Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images, FILE) From left, Secret Service Director Randolph Alles, first lady Melania Trump, President Donald Trump and an unnamed person, look at vehicles at the United States Secret Service James J. Rowley training facility in Beltsville, Md., Oct. 13, 2017.

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