Six Swift and Company facilities raided

13-12-2006 | |

Multiple Swift and Company meat processing facilities were raided by the US Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), on Tuesday 12, involving hundreds of illegal workers.

The raids followed a 10-month investigation into a large scale identity theft scheme, which supplied stolen identification documents to illegal immigrants. The plants affected include 77% of Swift’s pork operations.

Swift and Company added that if a substantial number of workers are removed from plants, full production will not be possible until they are replaced.
Swift, which is a major US producer of beef and pork with $9 billion in annual sales, claimed that the raids violated previous agreements with the government related to participation in a federal pilot worker programme.

Swift & Company president and CEO, Sam Rovit, stated: “Swift has never condoned the employment of unauthorized workers, nor have we ever knowingly hired such individuals. Since the inception of the Basic Pilot programme in 1997, every single one of Swift’s new domestic hires, including those being interviewed today by ICE officials, has duly completed I-9 forms and has received work authorisation through the government’s Basic Pilot programme. Swift has played by the rules and relied in good faith on a programme explicitly held out by the President of the United States as an effective tool to help employers comply with applicable immigration laws.”
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