In April, Texas made national headlines when it became the site of the largest workplace immigration raid by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in a decade. ICE agents arrested over 280 employees on immigration violations when they raided an electronics repair company in Allen, Texas. The arrested individuals, who were predominantly women, were natives of 15 different countries, including El Salvador, Mexico, Honduras, Nigeria, and Venezuela. ICE ultimately released a little over half the arrested workers with orders to appear, but about 110 of the workers remained in detention the day after the raid.
ICE executed a criminal search warrant at the company after receiving numerous tips that the company was hiring immigrant workers using fraudulent documents. The CEO of CVE Technology Group released a statement indicating that they were cooperating with federal authorities and had a long history of complying with immigration and employment laws.
Under the Trump administration, workplace immigration raids have become far more common. DHS initiated about 6,850 workplace raids last year, as compared with about 1,700 the year before. Arrests increased from about 140 to 800 during that timeframe, as well. The administration has taken the position that workplace raids serve as a deterrent for employees who are in the country illegally.
Typically, these raids have more consequences for workers than the companies themselves, as it can be difficult to prove that employers knew that individuals were working without legal immigration status or using falsified documents. Employers merely have a duty to ensure that documents presented by workers appear valid and they do not have the authority to request specific or different forms of identification from workers. The immigration attorneys of Peek & Toland have the experience that you need when you are seeking any type of relief or benefit under federal immigration laws. We will determine the facts and evidence that are relevant to your case, evaluate your options, and help you decide the best course of action for your case. It is our intention to place you in the best position possible to achieve your goals. Contact our Texas immigration attorneys at our office today and learn how we can assist you through this complicated situation.