Thursday, December 31, 2009

Pilgrim's Pride Corp. Agrees To Pay $4.5 Million To Feds For Hiring Illegal Workers

By H. Nelson Goodson
December 30, 2009

Pittsburg, TX - Pilgrim's Pride Corporation one of the largest chicken companies in the United States and Mexico settled this week with the U.S. Attorney's office to pay $4.5 million dollars in fines for hiring illegal workers. The company will be allowed to make payment installments within a period of three years.
Two years ago, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (USICE) raided five plants in two separate years between 2007-08 and arrested 338 undocumented workers.
In agreement with federal prosecutors, the company did not admit any wrongdoing, and civil or criminal charges would not be filed against Pilgrim's Pride Corporation. The company also agreed that it would do a better job in screening workers before being hired.
A two year probe by the U.S. Department of Justice found workers at five plants using false identities to work, which attributed to identity theft. USICE agents discovered numerous workers did not have authority to work in the U.S.
Pilgrim's Pride Corporation net sales in fiscal 2008 totaled $8.5 billion, and is currently ranked No. 304 on the Fortune 500 list of largest U.S. corporations.
Pilgrim's Pride employs approximately 41,000 people in the U.S.A., Mexico, and Puerto Rico. The company has facilities in Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Puerto Rico and Mexico.
The company has the capacity to process more than 45 million birds per week for a total of more than 9 billion pounds of poultry per year, according to Pilgrim's Pride Corp. web site.

Blog Editors note:

Companies should invest in legalizing their undocumented workers, rather than paying hefty fines to Feds!

For a major corporation to pay out that much money in fines to the feds, Pilgrim's Pride Corp. executives should have taken the option to legalize the 338 undocumented workers. They should have hired an immigration attorney to legalize the undocumented workers before getting raided in 2007-08 by USICE. It would have cost the company a lot less, and with $4.5 Million.. imagine how many undocumented immigrants they could have actually legalized.
Companies and manufacturers should start legalizing their workers for the New Year! They would saved millions compared to paying fines for hiring illegal workers to the feds.

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