ICE Raids Tennessee Slaughterhouse For Hiring Illegal Immigrants In Tax Evasion Scheme

Immigration and Customs Enforcement ICE agents stand outside a home in Atlanta during a targeted enforcement operation aimed at immigration fugitives re-entrants and at-large criminals living in the coun

ICE Raids Tennessee Slaughterhouse For Hiring Illegal Immigrants In Tax Evasion Scheme

Agents encountered 97 people working at the plant during the raid, ICE spokeswoman Tammy Spicer said in a statement Friday.

The maneuver follows a series of arrests at 7-11 stores and other workplaces in a President Trump-led crackdown on immigration.

A federal immigration raid Thursday morning at a Tennessee meat processing plant scooped up 97 people eligible for deportation. All of those arrested were in the country illegally, she said.

The National Immigration Law Center and other advocates said the Tennessee raid was the largest since President George W. Bush's administration and deployed numerous tactics of that era, with a surprise blitz of the factory, a helicopter and streets blocked by state and local authorities.

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The current administration has promised to crack down on employers who hire immigrants living in the country illegally, and several raids have taken place across the country.

Federal agents raided an eastern Tennessee meatpacking facility on Thursday following a months-long investigation into allegations the owners were employing illegal immigrants to avoid paying millions of dollars in taxes, according to court records.

They say the Trump administration's focus on border security will no block illegal immigration if immigrants can continue to find jobs in the United States.

Of the 86 immigrants arrested on civil immigration charges, ICE released 32 but did not explain why.

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Baxter called the brutal killing an "isolated incident" that didn't have warning signs or any arguments leading up to the attack. Mouhib's husband, mother-in-law and a 10-year-old boy were all at home at the time of the grisly beheading, according to Baxter.

Thirty-two people were reportedly released after being detained. Authorities estimate the company would have owed $2.5 million more in payroll taxes between 2013 and 2016 if it reported wages accurately.

The company's president and general manager, James Brantley, has not been formally charged.

ICE conducted 1,360 employee audits previous year and arrested more than 300 people for alleged criminal and civil immigration violations.

'That's because in the face of the threats of the Trump administration, communities have been organizing and coming together to defend their rights and we're not going to stop organizing, and the community isn't going to stop standing with these families until they're returned home, ' she said.

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Reports on the USGS website show it was felt as far away as Kansas City, Missouri, some 300 miles (480 kilometers) northeast of Covington.

Immigration rights activists are rallying behind the workers and their families.

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