Friday, November 09, 2007

23 illegal aliens arrested working at O’Hare airport, some on the tarmac

Twenty-three illegal immigrants were arrested November 7 working in critical areas of O’Hare International Airport in Chicago after an eight-month investigation that involved federal, state and Chicago law enforcement. The illegals used fake security badges and some were working on the tarmac. They were employed by Ideal Staffing Solutions Inc.

Ideal Staffing's corporate secretary and office manager also were arrested. Mary Gurin, 36, and Norinye Benitez, 24, were each charged with one federal count of harboring illegal immigrants for gain and one federal count of misuse of Social Security numbers. Benitez herself is believed to be an illegal immigrant from Mexico. The company provided workers for United Airlines, KLM and Qantas.

“These individuals built an illegal work force into their business practice, and our investigation identified a vulnerability that could compromise national security,” said Elissa Brown, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent.

Much of the investigation centered on the airport security badges issued by the Department of Aviation. Agents found that 110 of the 134 badges issued to Ideal Staffing workers did not match the individuals who carried them. The discrepancies were first noted in March by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection inspector.

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