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Immigration Law

Companies pay millions for hiring unauthorized workers

"When U.S. immigration agents scoured the hiring paperwork on file at Advanced Containment System Inc. last year, they found identification cards supposedly issued by the "Texas Department of Safety."  Words including "identification" and "department" were misspelled. One ID card even had the words "novelty item" typed on the back.  Some 44 percent of the company's Houston workforce from 2005 to 2009 was in the country illegally and was paid an estimated $2 million during that time, the audit showed.  On Tuesday, U.S. immigration officials and federal prosecutors announced they had reached a $2 million settlement with ACSI in exchange for avoiding criminal prosecution.  A second Houston company, Champion Window, also has agreed to forfeit $2 million to the government after an audit last year found 269 of its 451 workers - roughly 60 percent of its workforce - lacked legal status." - Susan Carroll, Houston Chronicle, Jan. 24, 2012.