Thursday, March 29, 2007

Changing Course on Illegal Immigration?

Real life continues to make comedians look like prophets.

From Yahoo News:

Two executives at a company that once helped build a fence to keep illegal immigrants from crossing the Mexican border were sentenced Wednesday to six months of home confinement for hiring undocumented workers.

Mel Kay, founder, chairman and president of Golden State Fence Co., and manager Michael McLaughlin had pleaded guilty in federal court to knowingly hiring illegal aliens. U.S. District Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz ordered each to serve 1,040 hours of community service and spend three years on probation.

Kay, 64, was fined $200,000 as part of a plea agreement, and McLaughlin agreed to pay $100,000.

Federal prosecutors took the rare step of seeking prison time after the men acknowledged hiring at least 10 illegal immigrants in 2004 and 2005. The charges carried a maximum possible penalty of five years in prison.

However, prosecutors were unable to find a previous case in which an employer had been sent to jail for knowingly hiring illegal immigrants.

"Prosecution is long overdue in this area," Moskowitz said. "Honestly, the government's efforts have been at the border, not with the employer. Obviously, the government has signaled a change with this case."
...either that, or the sheer amount of irony involved in a company using undocumented immigrants to build a wall to keep out undocumented immigrants was just too much to ignore. One set of prosecutions could just as easily signal a prosecutor who had nothing else to do or a prosecutor with an aversion to blatant, arrogant crimes as it could a substantial change in policy.

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