Saturday, January 20, 2007

Texas seafood company faces $500,000 fine; its president faces jail and fine

This time, the federal investigators and the courts got it right. Clifforn Hillman, 64, president of one of Texas' largest wholesale seafood businesses, faces six months in jail and a $3,000 fine after pleading guilty in federal court to hiring illegal aliens after helping them fake social security.

But his company, Hillman's Shrimp and Oyster Co., faces a whopping fine of up to $500,000 for helping illegal aliens get work visas and tutoring illegal employees on how to create false identities to keep their jobs. Along with two employees, Hillman pleaded guilty this week in Galveston U.S. court to one misdemeanor count each of conspiracy to hire undocumented aliens. The company entered a guilty plea to a felony charge of conspiracy to harbor illegal aliens.

An investigation by federal agencies revealed the Hillman company engaged in a scheme to employ illegal aliens.

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