RICO And Immigration
Over the last year or so, anti-immigrationists have sought to use the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) laws in the immigration context (see Featured Article below). In a recent 7th Circuit case (see below), two former employees of IBP, Inc. alleged that wages at their former plant were depressed by about $4 per hour and sought treble damages under RICO. In dismissing the case, the 7th Circuit noted: "Employers regularly line up additional help; they may, for example, recruit and train persons who will serve as permanent replacements if the union strikes. This supply-expanding activity is lawful ... Nor need employers bargain about other acts, such as closing plants and moving operations to places where labor is cheaper, that expand the effective size of the labor pool." The court identified the heart of the complaint, "The nub of the complaint is that IBP operates itself unlawfully — it is IBP that supposedly hires, harbors, and pays the unlawful workers, for the purpose of reducing its payroll." Under our laws, it is only the federal government that can enforce immigration law, there is no individual right under the RICO statute for the enforcement of immigration law. The paradox of an unenforced law exists because the law is in fact unenforceable. The complaintants are therefore wrong not just on legal grounds but they are also wrong on political and economic grounds. Hopefully, the spate of RICO suits will prompt Congress to make realistic immigration laws which are enforceable, i.e. laws which drastically expand employment-based immigration.
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RICO Laws Becoming The Last Resort Of American Workers
Dan Stein of the Federation For American Immigration Reform writes "It is very sad that ordinary citizens are being forced to go to such great lengths to force their own government to protect their jobs and wages from unscrupulous employers who knowingly hire people who are in the US illegally."
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Immigration Law News
Federal Register Notice On H-1B Cap Expected Soon
USCIS made available for public inspection a document relating to the H-1B cap which is expected to appear in tomorrow's Federal Register.
DOS Announces US-VISIT Exemptions
The Department of State announced guidelines to determine whether individuals should be exempted from arriving or departing requirements for fingerprinting and photographing or for providing other specified biometric identifiers.
Supreme Court Grants Certiorari To Two Deportation Cases
The Supreme Court granted certiorari in Jama, v. INS, Nos. 02-2324 (8th Cir. May. 27, 2003) and Leocal v.
Ashcroft, No. 02-14992 (11th Cir. Jun. 30, 2003).
RICO Claims Cannot Be Made For Violation Of The INA
In Deborah Baker and Richard Enyeart v. IBP, Inc., Nos. 02-3967 & 02-4065 (7th Cir. Feb. 4, 2004), in a case alleging that IBP's wages were too low because of the hiring of undocumented workers and seeking financial compensation for depressed wages including treble damages under RICO, the court said that the Plaintiff's claim was not one on which relief could be granted under the laws.
Section Within Newspaper Where Ad Appears May Frustrate Or Facilitate Regulatory Scheme
In the Matter of Escamilla & Sons, Inc., No. 2003-INA-39 (BALCA, Feb. 11, 2004), the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals said that failure to place the recruitment ad in the section of the newspaper most likely to draw qualified US applicants frustrated the regulatory scheme whether or not the Employer controlled where the ad appeared in the newspaper.
DOS's Country Condition Reports Are Skewed
In Tian-Yong Chen v. INS, No. 00-4136 (2nd Cir. Feb. 18, 2004), the court said that the IJ and the BIA should be wary not to place excessive reliance on published reports of the Department of State because the State Department as an agency of the executive branch of governement that is necessarily bound to be concerned to avoid abrading relations with other countries, especially other major world powers, may not present an accurate picture of human rights in other countries.
2nd Circuit Says BIA Relied Excessively On State Country Report
Law.com reports "Immigration authorities relied excessively on a State Department country report in denying the application of a Roman Catholic asylum-seeker who claimed he faced religious persecution in China, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled."
Border Patrol Agents Morale At All-Time Low
The Christian Science Monitor reports " To [Border Patrol agents], agents on the front line, it's the latest signal that America is going soft on illegal immigrants, even while asking the Border Patrol to step up efforts to catch illegals."
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Letters to the Editor
In response to the "Culture of No" article, let me share my experience at the DMV. As part of the essential anti-terrorist protections (somebody had the good sense to think of these things), it has now become more problematic to renew a driver's license - ad absurdum. When I tried to renew the driver's license I have had for over 40 years (I was born in the US of Russian-Jewish citizen parents), a discrepancy was discovered between the name on my social security documents and my driver's license. No driver's license for me. I had to go through endless shenanigans with Social Security, have now waited 3 months, and have yet to receive my driver's license. It was explained to me that this is part of the new anti-terrorist provisions. Last week I took my 91 year old mother to the DMV to renew her DMV ID, and because it had already expired, could not be used to obtain a new one. This I was told was part of the new anti-terrorist provisions. I pointed out that as an immigration attorney I knew that virtually all immigration law makes exceptions for the very old. Not the DMV I was told. Moreover, because my mother came here 85 years ago from a country no longer in existence, and had lost all of her documents through the years, I was assured that I had a problem with no solution whatsoever. I asked what possible misuse an ID with a 1913 birthdate and a shriveled up old lady on it could be put to? The nastiness of the glare was noteworthy. A call to my congressman remedied the problem and the nastiness, but, what are we coming to?
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