Four employees of poultry plants in the Jackson, Miss., area have been indicted, almost exactly a year after the plants were raided in one of the biggest immigration enforcement actions in U.S. history.
The four were supervisors or human-resources employees, charged with harboring illegal immigrants and helping them obtain false Social Security cards. The indictments against them, unsealed Aug. 6, were based on raids on several poultry plants in or near Jackson, conducted by the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement service on Aug. 7, 2019.
About 680 workers were swept up in those raids, which drew widespread criticism for separating parents from children on the first day of school. Of the detained workers, 119 have been charged with crimes including identity theft and falsifying immigration documents. The four named Aug. 6 are the first to have their indictments announced by the U.S. Attorney.
The four were supervisors and human resource managers at plants belonging to Pearl River Foods and A&B Inc. The charges against them include harboring undocumented immigrants, helping them obtain false Social Security cards and filing false wage reports. No company owners or executives have been charged.
Local U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst emphasized in announcing the indictments that the alleged identity thefts victimized specific people, including a young woman who had her Social Security benefits cut off and a young man trying to join the Navy.