By Inger Eberhart, March 17, 2020
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) executed multiple federal criminal search warrants at several agricultural processing plants across Mississippi on the morning of August 7, 2019. The processing plants involved were:
- A&B, Inc (Pelahatchie) and PH Food, Inc (Morton); both owned by the same person,
- Koch Foods of MI, LLC (Morton),
- Pearl River Foods (Carthage), and
- PECO Foods (Canton).
ICE agents were tipped off by confidential informants who were legally employed by the processing plants. As part of an ongoing investigation and based on historical interactions, approximately 680 illegal aliens were found to be working at the plants. Here are just a few of the circumstances under which the illegal aliens were operating:
- Perez-Velazquez was previously removed from the U.S. He returned and used the identity of a U.S. citizen for the purpose of obtaining employment at PH Food and to obtain a Mississippi driver’s license;
- Morales-Cabrera was arrested three months earlier for DUI, Careless Driving, No Driver’s License, and no insurance. He admitted to being in the US illegally and claimed to have entered the US 18 years ago;
- Enoc Baez and Antonio Juan were both using social security numbers assigned to deceased individuals;
- Torrez-Domingo was arrested by the U.S. Border Patrol in Texas in April 2019. He was previously arrested by ICE in 2017 working for Koch Foods in Forest, MS;
- Ramirez-Coronado disclosed to agents that the only item needed to begin and continue working at the plant was his name.
Each illegal alien was interviewed by ICE staff to inquire and record any potential mitigating humanitarian issues. All the illegal aliens were either placed into removal proceedings before the federal immigration courts or processed for removal from the U.S. The workplace enforcement effort netted over 675 illegal aliens unlawfully employed. This operation was ICE’s largest enforcement action to date.
ICE created a 24-hour toll-free English/Spanish hotline for family members of those arrested in this workplace enforcement effort to address questions about their detention location and status, as well as the removal process.
Exactly three months later, House Homeland Security Committee Chair Bennie Thompson held a field hearing in his home state of Mississippi to examine the raids across his state. The hearing was televised on C-SPAN…
- ICE executes federal search warrants at multiple Mississippi locations: https://www.ice.gov/news/releases/ice-executes-federal-search-warrants-multiple-mississippi-locations
- Employer sanctions: https://www.fairus.org/issue/workforce-economy/employer-sanctions
- Al Green’s Immigration-Reduction Report Card: https://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/congress/1177/gradescoresheet/#tabset-3
- S. Sentencing Commission: Quick facts on non-U.S. citizen offenders: https://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/research-and-publications/quick-facts/Non-Citizens_FY18.pdf
- No, Americans need not apply: https://cis.org/Report/EEOC-lawsuits-native-immigrant
- All You Americans Are Fired’ — Blacks First? https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/all-you-americans-are-fired-blacks-first/
Inger earned her B.S. in psychology from Georgia State University, M.B.A. from Shorter University, and a M.A. in communications from Kennesaw State University. She has experience in finance, operations management, public affairs, and board leadership in the corporate, non-profit and government sectors. She became engaged in the illegal immigration issue upon meeting her now friend of over 10 years, D.A. King of the Dustin Inman Society. Through D.A.’s mentorship, she advocates for enforcement of our immigration laws through local and regional media outlets and public speaking engagements. She has also been a blogger for national organizations, ghostwriter, speech writer, and editor for state and local political figures, as well as the social media manager for the movie Runaway Slave, a Dove Award winning documentary. Through the Virtual Fellows Program, she worked with the U.S. State Department on their social media outreach. Currently, she is the assistant to a local politician.