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  • ICE: Nearly 600 detained in Mississippi plant raid

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080826/...migration_raid

    ---------------------------

    LAUREL, Miss. - The largest single-workplace immigration raid in U.S. history has caused panic among Hispanic families in this small southern Mississippi town, where federal agents rounded up nearly 600 plant workers suspected of being in the country illegally.

    One worker caught in Monday's sweep at the Howard Industries transformer plant said fellow workers applauded as immigrants were taken into custody. Federal officials said a tip from a union member prompted them to start investigating several years ago.

    Fabiola Pena, 21, cradled her 2-year-old daughter as she described a chaotic scene at the plant as the raid began, followed by clapping.

    "I was crying the whole time. I didn't know what to do," Pena said. "We didn't know what was happening because everyone started running. Some people thought it was a bomb but then we figured out it was immigration."

    About 100 of the 595 detained workers were released for humanitarian reasons, many of them mothers who were fitted with electronic monitoring bracelets and allowed to go home to their children, officials said.

    About 475 other workers were transferred to a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in Jena, La. Nine who were under 18 were transferred to the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement.

    John Foxworth, an attorney representing some of the immigrants, said eight appeared in federal court in Hattiesburg on Tuesday because they face criminal charges for allegedly using false Social Security and residency identification.

    He said the raid was traumatic for families.

    "There was no communication, an immediate loss of any kind of news and a lack of understanding of what's happening to their loved ones," he said. "A complete and utter feeling of helplessness."

    The superintendent of the county school district said about half of approximately 160 Hispanic students were absent Tuesday.

    Roberto Velez, pastor at Iglesia Cristiana Peniel, where an estimated 30 to 40 percent of the 200 parishioners were caught up in the raid, said parents were afraid immigration officials would take them.

    "They didn't send their kids to school today," he said. "How scared is that?"

    Those detained were from Brazil, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, and Peru, said Barbara Gonzalez, an ICE spokeswoman.

    Elizabeth Alegria, 26, a Mexican immigrant, was working at the plant Monday when ICE agents stormed in. When they found out she has two sons, ages 4 and 9, she was fitted with a bracelet and told to appear in federal court next month. Her husband, Andres, was not so lucky.

    "I'm very traumatized because I don't know if they are going to let my husband go and when I will see him," Elizabeth Alegria said through a translator Tuesday as she returned to the Howard Industries parking lot to retrieve her sport utility vehicle.

    "We have kids without dads and pregnant mothers who got their husbands taken away," said Velez's son, Robert, youth pastor at the church. "It was like a horror story. They got handled like they were criminals."

    Howard Industries is in Mississippi's Pine Belt region, known for commercial timber growth and chicken processing plants. The tech company produces dozens of products ranging from electrical transformers to medical supplies, according to its Web site.

    Gonzalez said agents had executed search warrants at both the plant and the company headquarters in nearby Ellisville. She said no company executives had been detained, but this is an "ongoing investigation and yesterday's action was just the first part."

    A woman at the Ellisville headquarters told The Associated Press on Tuesday that no one was available to answer questions.

    In a statement to the Laurel Leader-Call newspaper, Howard Industries said the company "runs every check allowed to ascertain the immigration status of all applicants for its jobs."

    "It is company policy that it hires only U.S. citizens and legal immigrants," the statement said.

    Gov. Haley Barbour recently signed a law requiring Mississippi employers to use a U.S. Homeland Security system to check new workers' immigration status.

    The law took effect July 1 for businesses with state contracts and takes effect Jan. 1 for other businesses. Mississippi lawmakers once used laptops made by Howard Industries, but it's not clear whether the company has current state contracts.

    Under the law, a company found guilty of employing illegal immigrants could lose public contracts for three years and the right to do business in Mississippi for one year.

    The law also makes it a felony for an illegal immigrant to accept a job in Mississippi. A message was left with the district attorney's office after hours seeking comment on whether he would use the law to bring state charges against Howard Industries or the workers.

    The Mississippi raid is one of several nationwide in recent years.

    On May 12, federal immigration officials swept into Agriprocessors, the nation's largest kosher meatpacking plant, in Iowa. Nearly 400 workers were detained and dozens of fraudulent permanent resident alien cards were seized from the plant's human resources department, according to court records. In December 2006, 1,297 were arrested at Swift meatpacking plants in Nebraska and five other states.

    ----------------------------

    Gee, maybe they were treated like criminals because they are!

    Good to see, seems like ICE did a real fine job

  • #2
    good job ICE about time you got some of them (illegals) out of mississippi

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by KibblesNbitz590 View Post
      http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080826/...migration_raid

      ---------------------------

      LAUREL, Miss. - The largest single-workplace immigration raid in U.S. history has caused panic among Hispanic families in this small southern Mississippi town, where federal agents rounded up nearly 600 plant workers suspected of being in the country illegally.

      One worker caught in Monday's sweep at the Howard Industries transformer plant said fellow workers applauded as immigrants were taken into custody. Federal officials said a tip from a union member prompted them to start investigating several years ago.

      Fabiola Pena, 21, cradled her 2-year-old daughter as she described a chaotic scene at the plant as the raid began, followed by clapping.

      "I was crying the whole time. I didn't know what to do," Pena said. "We didn't know what was happening because everyone started running. Some people thought it was a bomb but then we figured out it was immigration."

      About 100 of the 595 detained workers were released for humanitarian reasons, many of them mothers who were fitted with electronic monitoring bracelets and allowed to go home to their children, officials said.

      About 475 other workers were transferred to a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in Jena, La. Nine who were under 18 were transferred to the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement.

      John Foxworth, an attorney representing some of the immigrants, said eight appeared in federal court in Hattiesburg on Tuesday because they face criminal charges for allegedly using false Social Security and residency identification.

      He said the raid was traumatic for families.

      "There was no communication, an immediate loss of any kind of news and a lack of understanding of what's happening to their loved ones," he said. "A complete and utter feeling of helplessness."

      The superintendent of the county school district said about half of approximately 160 Hispanic students were absent Tuesday.

      Roberto Velez, pastor at Iglesia Cristiana Peniel, where an estimated 30 to 40 percent of the 200 parishioners were caught up in the raid, said parents were afraid immigration officials would take them.

      "They didn't send their kids to school today," he said. "How scared is that?"

      Those detained were from Brazil, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, and Peru, said Barbara Gonzalez, an ICE spokeswoman.

      Elizabeth Alegria, 26, a Mexican immigrant, was working at the plant Monday when ICE agents stormed in. When they found out she has two sons, ages 4 and 9, she was fitted with a bracelet and told to appear in federal court next month. Her husband, Andres, was not so lucky.

      "I'm very traumatized because I don't know if they are going to let my husband go and when I will see him," Elizabeth Alegria said through a translator Tuesday as she returned to the Howard Industries parking lot to retrieve her sport utility vehicle.

      "We have kids without dads and pregnant mothers who got their husbands taken away," said Velez's son, Robert, youth pastor at the church. "It was like a horror story. They got handled like they were criminals."

      Howard Industries is in Mississippi's Pine Belt region, known for commercial timber growth and chicken processing plants. The tech company produces dozens of products ranging from electrical transformers to medical supplies, according to its Web site.

      Gonzalez said agents had executed search warrants at both the plant and the company headquarters in nearby Ellisville. She said no company executives had been detained, but this is an "ongoing investigation and yesterday's action was just the first part."

      A woman at the Ellisville headquarters told The Associated Press on Tuesday that no one was available to answer questions.

      In a statement to the Laurel Leader-Call newspaper, Howard Industries said the company "runs every check allowed to ascertain the immigration status of all applicants for its jobs."

      "It is company policy that it hires only U.S. citizens and legal immigrants," the statement said.

      Gov. Haley Barbour recently signed a law requiring Mississippi employers to use a U.S. Homeland Security system to check new workers' immigration status.

      The law took effect July 1 for businesses with state contracts and takes effect Jan. 1 for other businesses. Mississippi lawmakers once used laptops made by Howard Industries, but it's not clear whether the company has current state contracts.

      Under the law, a company found guilty of employing illegal immigrants could lose public contracts for three years and the right to do business in Mississippi for one year.

      The law also makes it a felony for an illegal immigrant to accept a job in Mississippi. A message was left with the district attorney's office after hours seeking comment on whether he would use the law to bring state charges against Howard Industries or the workers.

      The Mississippi raid is one of several nationwide in recent years.

      On May 12, federal immigration officials swept into Agriprocessors, the nation's largest kosher meatpacking plant, in Iowa. Nearly 400 workers were detained and dozens of fraudulent permanent resident alien cards were seized from the plant's human resources department, according to court records. In December 2006, 1,297 were arrested at Swift meatpacking plants in Nebraska and five other states.

      ----------------------------

      Gee, maybe they were treated like criminals because they are!

      Good to see, seems like ICE did a real fine job


      The union trying to protect job likely put everyone out of work. They should have been more proactive BEFORE 600 illegal workers were hired.

      Comment


      • #4
        That company is scum. I personally suffered the loss of a job so that a scumbag company could hire illegals for super low wages. I basically trained people who couldn't even speak english, and they took my job when all was finished. I was relegated to working at wal-mart when all was said and done, and it took me years to get back on my feet after that.

        When I say I have no love for illegals, that is why. That company, and those companies like it are the true reason for the declining economy. They have created a lower class. First of all, they hire illegals, creating a class of very low income people. Second of all for those of us who are legal, we find ourselves in a job market where companies don't pay well anymore since cheap labor is abundant. That means the working class has lower wages overall. Also it's hard for us to find jobs since there is a flood of people willing to do manual labor for super cheap.

        For those who argue illegals don't take jobs from Americans, I see no shortage of unemployment in the african american community. In fact in most cases it is twice as high as america overall.
        What is Perseverance?
        -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
        -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
        -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


        BOP - BPA - ICE

        Comment


        • #5

          The superintendent of the county school district said about half of approximately 160 Hispanic students were absent Tuesday.

          "They didn't send their kids to school today," he said. "How scared is that?"
          See more crap that I can't stand. Were these illegals paying taxes to the local school system for all of their children, who probably require ESL, and other expensive educational assistance? Probably not. They are a tremendous burden on the system, and I wouldn't mind if they all get deported immediately.
          What is Perseverance?
          -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
          -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
          -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


          BOP - BPA - ICE

          Comment


          • #6
            "We have kids without dads and pregnant mothers who got their husbands taken away," said Velez's son, Robert, youth pastor at the church. "It was like a horror story. They got handled like they were criminals."

            Still my favorite part

            Comment


            • #7
              Good riddens and they can take their anchor babies with em.
              The liberal politician has the only job where they go to the office to work for everyone but those who pay their salary.

              Comment


              • #8
                Good job ICE. I am tired of the whole "treated like criminals" if you break the law, you're a criminal. If you are in the country illegally, you ARE a CRIMINAL.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by TheKansan View Post
                  See more crap that I can't stand. Were these illegals paying taxes to the local school system for all of their children, who probably require ESL, and other expensive educational assistance? Probably not. They are a tremendous burden on the system, and I wouldn't mind if they all get deported immediately.
                  Oh wow, I completely agree.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    And I agree that if you are born in this country and your parent's are American's then you can stay in this country. If you are born in this country and your Parent or Parent's are ILLEGAL then you are ILLEGAL and you get sent back along with your parent or parents.
                    Bill

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Good job ICE, I'm so glad they're starting to do this stuff now.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        .....Just more work for Border Patrol. These illegal aliens will attempt to return within days of deportation.
                        Gov Blagojevich - "I'am the American dream...."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by StephDakel View Post
                          .....Just more work for Border Patrol. These illegal aliens will attempt to return within days of deportation.
                          I don't think this is going to make much of a difference.......
                          "Friendly Fire, isn't"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by StephDakel View Post
                            .....Just more work for Border Patrol. These illegal aliens will attempt to return within days of deportation.
                            Bring'em!
                            The only thing we have to fear is change itself.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I live in french creole and Cajun country in the heartland of French country down here in Louisiana. My point to that is we don't get many illegals here in my city. However, we have recently been seeing many, pop up and they figure it's a safe haven here, because they don't think we will know what to do with them when we find them. I stopped a speeder the other day, asked for the usual documents on a TS. He gave me a fake, "International DL". That they get from a vendor that does them for 50 bucks. I had seen it while studing fake documents on a website a while back. I immediately recognized it. It's mean to look like a nice hard drivers license, with a US address, however, there is no such thing as a "Translation of International Document D.L." I confiscated it, and cuffed the guy and asked him for his Visa, he played like he didn't understand english. I recall in a survival spanish class, that most all non-speaking visitors to this country, legally, will understand the word VISA, and greencard. When he saw I was loosing patience, when I asked again if he was an illegal alien he shook his head yes. I said, no papers? he shook his head no, and said, no, no papers. I then arrested him and transported him to our jail and booked him on the Louisiana Felony charge of, Illegal Immigrant operating a Motor Vehicle and speeding. As per the Louisiana Statute 14:100.13 we are to notify ICE immediatly upon arrest. So when I got to the station. I told a few what I had, and they said, man, Ice won't take him, only if you round a bunch up, they are not coming for just one. Well I booked him anyways on the felony charge previously stated. After Calling ICE, they said, they would come and get him and for us to just hold him until they come. Well it took a month for them to get him, but they did, and when they did, they also paid our department a nice reimbursement for detaining a "Federal Prisoner". So I have to say that was my only experience with ICE and they did their job and since then, our S.O. has arrested a couple on the same charge and ICE came got them also.

                              Now to play devils advocate, I don't know what ICE did with them after they took them away, IE.....catch and release or deport, but I was suprised they came for one. Seat belt tickets are very minor as some would say so is illegal immigration, but we do prosecute seat belt tickets, and hold them accountable, why not illegal immigration.
                              It's breaking the law and communities pocket books when it shouldn't, why you ask, cause it's illegal to start with! Good job on the raid keep'em coming
                              Ignored: Towncop, Pulicords, TacoMac, Ten08

                              Comment

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