According to a Monday U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement (ICE) press release, a company in El Paso, TX has agreed to pay a multi-million dollar fine among other measures after conspiring with a temp agency to hire illegal aliens.
“In a non-prosecution agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Speed Fab Crete, a Texas-based builder, admitted it illegally employed individuals not authorized to work in the United States, and agreed to forfeit $3 million to the U.S. Treasury for use in promoting law enforcement activities related to immigration enforcement,” ICE said.
The company has also agreed to implement E-verify, which the federal government uses to ensure that employees have legal status and which states like Florida are trying to mandate for private corporations. Speed Fab Crete will also hold a company-wide training on immigration compliance and vows to discipline employees who violate hiring guidelines by attempting to employ illegal aliens in the future.
The construction company has three owners: Carl Eugene Hall, Ronald Alan Hamm, and David Leon Bloxom. All pleaded guilty to various crimes after they were caught employing the illegal aliens. So did the owner of a temp agency that employed people on Speed Fab Crete’s behalf.
“Earlier this month, Hall pleaded guilty to conspiracy to unlawfully harbor illegal aliens, a felony,” ICE said in its press release. “Mark Sevier, owner of Take Charge Staffing, a temp agency used by Speed Fab Crete, also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to unlawfully harbor illegal aliens. Hamm, Bloxom, and the company’s chief financial officer, Robert Edwin James, pleaded guilty to unlawful employment of illegal aliens, a misdemeanor offense.”
ICE made it clear that the company’s hiring of illegal aliens was not simply an innocent mistake.
“According to their plea papers and Speed Fab Crete’s factual statement, the defendants admitted that they attempted to disguise the employment of unauthorized workers at Speed Fab Crete by placing them on the payroll of Take Charge Staffing, then lied to the government, stating that the unauthorized workers had been terminated from employment at Speed Fab Crete,” ICE said.
The company was busted for employing 39 illegal aliens in 2016, and promised to fire them. In so doing, Take Charge Staffing simply hired the illegal aliens, and assigned them to work for Speed Fab Crete within the same week. The latter company then sent a letter to Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) saying that the 39 illegal aliens had been discharged.
According to ICE, the fine is just the beginning of the punishment for the company’s owners. They are facing serious jail time.
“Hall and Sevier are facing up to five years in federal prison,” the press release said. “Bloxom, Hamm, and James are facing up to six months in federal prison. As part of the plea agreements, each individual will also be required to pay a $69,000 fine, equal to $3,000 per alien, which is the statutory maximum.”
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