Federal officials have raided more than a dozen 7-Eleven convenience stores in Long Island, N.Y., and Virginia and arrested store managers for hiring and employing illegal immigrants.
The raids come as the Senate is poised to vote on a long-awaited measure overhauling the nation’s immigration system, including the employment verification process.
In a statement Monday morning, 7-Eleven said it was aware of the raids and arrests, and planned to cooperate with officials from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) as federal prosecutors pursue charges.
Investigators are also probing at least another 40 7-Eleven stores along the East Coast while targeting as much as $30 million in forfeitures, according to an anonymous source familiar with the case who spoke to The New York Times.
The managers arrested on Monday were charged in an indictment alleging that they committed a string of identity theft crimes, which included fraudulently using the Social Security numbers of dead people and children in order to pay illegal immigrants, according to the report.