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ICE Pushes Forward Enforcement Strategy With 7-Eleven Raid

On January 10, 2018, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raided dozens of 7-Eleven stores across the country. Arriving with the rising of the sun, ICE arrested 21 individuals after entering 98 stores in 17 states. It has been reported that the 21 individuals were all employees. Stores were given three days to show documents reflecting the immigration status of their employees.

The raid coincided with ICE’s new worksite enforcement. This enforcement has a three-pronged approach: 1) compliance through employment record inspections, civil fines, and referrals for debarment; 2) enforcement through the arrest of employers knowingly hiring undocumented workers along with the arrest of those undocumented workers; and 3) outreach to create a culture of compliance and accountability.

ICE has publicly warned that more large-scale compliance inspections will be coming and that companies of all sizes will be on its radar. ICE’s Acting Director stated: “Today’s actions send a strong message to U.S. businesses that hire and employ an illegal workforce: ICE will enforce the law, and if you are found to be breaking the law, you will be held accountable.” The raids also reflect ICE’s intent to dissuade undocumented immigrants from entering the U.S. by removing the possibility of employment.