Why Aren’t the Feds Frog-Walking Tyson Foods Executives?
By: Jim Kouri, CPP
Recently, Department of Homeland Security’s Secretary Michael Chertoff made a big deal out of federal agents arresting seven current and former managers of IFCO Systems North American, Inc. for conspiring to transport, harbor, and encourage and induce illegal aliens to reside in the United States for commercial advantage and private financial gain.
Chertoff noted that the conspiracy charge carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for each alien they’re responsible for hiring. Two other IFCO employees were arrested on criminal charges relating to fraudulent documents.
Under the current administration, interior and work site enforcement have been virtually abandoned with the exception of extremely isolated and highly publicized raids such as the IFCO busts.
Since the day Bush took office his people have steadfastly refused to enforce a variety of immigration laws. Now President Bush wants to create the impression that our immigration laws can’t be enforced by convincing the American public that the only alternative to amnesty and guest workers is mass deportation.
Now, I’m not going to denigrate DHS’s efforts to enforce immigration laws. However, when we have companies such as Tyson Foods closing plants because they expect their illegal alien workers to partake in protests, boycotts and demonstrations, why aren’t the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents swarming all over their facilities?
Perhaps the reason Tyson Foods openly hires illegal aliens is that it’s head honchos are tight with the Clintons and President George W. Bush.
Tyson Foods’ financial records show that they had been funding former US president Bill Clinton in many of his political campaigns, beginning back at the time when Clinton was Governor of Arkansas. Don Tyson was one of Bill Clinton’s closest friends and biggest supporters, according to grand jury testimony concerning Tyson’s political misconduct. And Don Tyson was Bill Clinton’s top fundraiser during his governorship and presidential elections.
Joe Henrickson, a former Tyson airplane pilot, admitted to transporting endless envelopes of cash from Tyson corporate offices to Governor Clinton, money that doesn’t figure in the annual accounting system.
Also, Tyson Foods was fined $6 million as a result of confessing their donation of at least $12,000 in cash and gifts to former US Agricultural Secretary, Mike Espy, up until his swift departure in early 1994. A Wall Street Journal article noted that, “Espy had been “feted” by Don Tyson at a football game and had outlined several regulatory decisions that seemed to benefit Tyson Foods.” In another instance, inside information supplied by Tyson Foods chief counsellor James Blair to Hilary Clinton on a swine futures market deal enabled the First Lady to make an overnight profit of approximately $100,000.
More recent records show that Tyson was a big contributer to President Bush’s campaigns, as well. More importantly, President Bush generally favors plans to give millions of illegal immigrants a chance at US citizenship without leaving the country, but does not want to be more publicly supportive because of opposition among conservative House Republicans, according to senators who attended a recent White House meeting.
Truth be told, the worksite enforcement program has been a low priority under both INS and ICE. For example, in fiscal year 1999 INS devoted about 9 percent of its total investigative agents’ time to worksite enforcement, while in fiscal year 2003 it allocated about 4 percent. ICE officials claim that the agency has experienced difficulties in proving employer violations and setting and collecting fine amounts that meaningfully deter employers from knowingly hiring unauthorized workers.
In addition, INS and then ICE shifted its worksite enforcement focus to critical infrastructure protection after September 11, 2001. DHS also developed new written procedures and acted to ensure that immigration investigators are aware of all individuals with revoked visas who may be in the country.
However, weaknesses remain. For example, State Department and DHS procedures are not fully coordinated and lack performance standards, such as specific time frames, for completing each step of the process. Outstanding legal and policy issues continue to exist regarding the removal of individuals based solely on their visa revocation.
As part of its mission to ensure national security, DHS is charged with enforcing the laws requiring employers to employ only individuals authorized to work in the United States. The Form I-9 requirement stems from Section 274A of the Immigration and Nationality Act and implementing regulations, which require all U.S. employers (including agricultural associations or employers who recruit or refer persons for employment for a fee) to verify on the Form I-9 the identity and employment eligibility of all employees — including U.S. citizens — hired to work in the United States after November 6, 1986.
Completed Forms I-9 are not filed with the federal government. Instead, they must be retained by the employer in its own files and made available for inspection by DHS, the Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices, or the Department of Labor for three years after the date of hire or one year after the date the employee’s employment is terminated, whichever is later.
Recruiters or referrers for a fee are required to retain the Form I-9 records for three years after the date of the hire. Failure to properly complete and retain the Form I-9 subjects the employer to civil penalties ranging from $110 to $1,100. Hardly a penalty for companies making millions of dollars in profits due to low wages paid to illegal aliens.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a staff writer for the New Media Alliance (thenma.org). He’s former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed “Crack City” by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He’s also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He’s a news writer for TheConservativeVoice.Com. He’s also a columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he’s syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. He’s appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com. Kouri’s own website is located at http://jimkouri.us
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he's a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He's a news writer and columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he's syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc. To subscribe to Kouri's newsletter write to COPmagazine@aol.com and write "Subscription" on the subject line.