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Eleven locations in Nebraska, including one in Antelope County, was part of a 15-month investigation by the Department of Homeland Security.
According to a press release by Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) served a series of criminal arrest warrants for 17 individuals connected to an alleged criminal conspiracy to exploit illegal alien laborers for profit, fraud, wire fraud and money laundering in Nebraska and Minnesota.
On Wednesday morning, Nebraska State Patrol blocked the entrance to the Long Pine Hog Confinement located one mile east and two miles south of Royal as the Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) team worked the scene inside the fenced area of the confinement.
In addition to these arrest warrants, authorities also served search warrants for worksite hiring violations at agricultural firms in Nebraska and Minnesota, and federal document search warrants at locations.
During this investigation, authorities identified employees who were subject to arrest for immigration violations and were unlawfully working at these businesses. Officials said 133 people were arrested on immigration violations.
Special Agent in Charge Tracy J. Cormier said in the release, "The job magnet in the United States is primarily what draws illegal aliens across our borders. This HSI-led criminal investigation has shown that these targeted businesses were knowingly hiring illegal workers to unlawfully line their own pockets by cheating the workers, cheating the taxpayers and cheating their business competitors."
According to the release, warrants were served at:
Those listed in the indictment are listed below. Those with an asterisk were not in custody as of this release.