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May 2006 - Idaho Observer (ID)

DHS Secretary Chertoff Vows To Seize Assets, Prosecute Employers Caught Hiring Illegals

But Will He Go After UNICOR, Woolrich For Using Uncocumented Prison Labor Under Dod Contract?

Return to Drug War News: Don't Miss Archive

On April 21, 2006, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff was quoted in the Wall Street Journal as stating that his agency "...will seek asset forfeitures and begin filing criminal charges against employers caught hiring illegal immigrants and....[d]ocument fraud task forces around the country would go after employers who build their business models around low-wage illegal immigrants...[n]othing is off limits."

Duane Olson, a drug war prisoner being held in a federal pen in Miami, immediately notified Chertoff via a registered letter dated May 2, 2006, that he can begin his "war on hiring illegals" by seeking to forfeit the assets of the U.S. Department of Defense and some of its contractors while preparing to file criminal charges against U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and an interesting list of corporate CEOs operating under contract to the U.S. government. Olson also sent a registered letter to Rumsfeld explaining the situation.

UNICOR is the corporate banner under which the nation's prisoners are organized into pools of cheap labor so other corporations may produce goods and services without having to incur the overhead costs associated with paying employees reasonable wages and benefits. Olson reports that the amount of money prison laborers are able to earn is based upon their level of education. Since undocumented illegal alien prisoners are generally uneducated, their labor is particularly sought after by UNICOR companies because they can be paid as little as 23 cents an hour.

Formal Complaint

The Olson letter to Chertoff was accompanied by a "formal complaint" in which Olson accuses U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, U.S. Bureau of Prisons Director Harley Lappin, Federal Correctional Institution-Miami Warden Jorge Pastrana and UNICOR-FCI-Miami Warden Rudy Cordero continue to "Employ the services and labor of un-documented workers (illegal aliens) for unjust enrichment in violation of Title 8, U.S. Code, Sections 1324(a)(1)(A), 1324a(a)(2) and Executive Order 12989."

Count 2 of Olson's complaint, which was CCd to the accused and other key persons in government and law, accuses the above-mentioned individuals of "knowingly and intentionally, [to] orchestrate, combine and conspire and have tacit agreement to 'market for sale' the 'goods and services' manufactured and performed by undocumented the United States military for the invasion and occupation of the sovereign nation of Iraq, in furtherance of unjust enrichment...and contrary to the interests and national security of the United States of America and 'We the People.'"

Olson, who may have solved the riddle of the Crime Control Act of 1984 that justified the federal war on drugs and the subsequent explosion of the U.S. prison population (The IO, April, 2006), supplied Chertoff with easily-verified support for his claims.

Letter To Rumsfeld

Also on May 2, 2006, a registered letter, CCd to the same interested parties as the letter and complaint sent to Chertoff, was sent to Secretary Rumsfeld. In this letter, Olson informed the secretary of defense that his department, " procuring 'goods and services' for the United States Military Complex, both directly and indirectly, from Federal Prison Industries, Inc., trade name UNICOR."

Specifically stated was the "multi-million dollar contract with Woolrich, Inc., a Pennsylvania-based corporation, for air crew jackets that will be manufactured by Federal Prison Industries, Inc., FCI/UNICOR/MIAMI.

Again he cited the Title 8 sections of U.S. Code in which such activities are described as criminal. He also cited Executive Order 12989, signed by President Clinton, which states that companies or contractors that provide goods and services to the federal government and who "[k]nowingly employ unauthorized alien workers" will have their federal contracts terminated.

If Chertoff is true to his word, then companies such as Woolrich will have their assets seized and criminal charges will be filed against their chief officers.

Rumsfeld was also informed that the use of undocumented alien prison labor to produce items used in war could qualify as racketeering that could be prosecuted under federal RICO statutes.

"I demanded a response from both Chertoff and Rumsfeld," Olson commented. "We'll see," he said.

In the case of Chertoff, a non-response will indicate that a double standard exists in that it is okay for the federal government and its pet companies to exploit undocumented alien prison laborers for distinct marketplace advantages but private enterprises not working for the government will be destroyed for using undocumented illegal alien labor.

In closing his letter to Rumsfeld, Olson warned that, if he receives no response by mid-May, he will seek a temporary injunction in federal court pursuant to Title 28, USC Section 1651.

The Government's Illegal Alien Prison Labor Pool:

According to U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics (May, 2004), the total number of illegal aliens imprisoned in state and federal institutions was 90,700-34,456 in federal pens; 56,244 in state pens.

Eighty percent of the total incarcerated illegal alien population is being held in three states: California, Arizona and Texas.

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