Tag: Postville

Former CEO of Postville Plant Arrested

Finally, some action is being taken against the management of the Agriprocessors meatpacking plant in Postville, IA, the site of one of the largest raids of undocumented workers in U.S. history when 389 people were arrested on May 12th of this year.

Federal immigration agents arrested Sholom Rubashkin, the former CEO of the plant, on Thursday.  Rubashkin is being charged with conspiracy to harbor undocumented immigrants for financial gain, aiding and abetting document fraud, and aiding and abetting aggravated identity theft.  He resigned shortly after the May 12th raid.  If convicted on all counts Rubashkin faces up to 22 years in prison and $750,000 in fines.

Sorted by race

As many of us have been reveling in the 45th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s “I Have a Dream Speech” and the nomination of an African American man to be President of the United States, our country continues to practice some of the most egregious human rights violations we’ve seen in the last 40-50 years.

I expect the people of Postville, Iowa woke up on Tuesday morning with heavy hearts, knowing exactly what so many in Laurel, MS were feeling the day after an ICE raid in which almost 600 people were arrested and jailed. It seems that, as far as ICE, the Justice Department, and Bushco, Postville was such a great succes that it is likely to be repeated all over the country.


Putting 2 and 2 Together: Julie Myers, ICE, and Postville, Iowa

We learned from Dr. Erik Camayd-Freixas in his devastating essay (posted by Duke in its entirety at Sanctuary), that there were horrible travesties of both the law and justice itself in how the Postville, Iowa raid was executed.

As Dr. Camayd-Freixas said, speaking of his conversation with one of the immigration judges who had no choice but to rule as a rubber-stamp for the ICE:

As a citizen, I want our judges to administer justice, not a federal agency.

Yet that is exactly what happened.  A federal agency administered “justice” and the defense attorneys and judges were helpless to change anything.  As a result, an entire town was ripped apart, economic devastation ensued, and as we now see (h/t woc phd by way of symsess’ great roundups at Sanctuary), the human rights abuses continue:

Women were deeply impacted by the raids. First, female workers at Postville were part of the round up. The lost access to their children, including babies that were still nursing, without warning nor concern. For others, many of the primary or main source of income in their household was permanently removed. In many cases, the raids also labeled these women as undocumented, ensuring that they could not work. Others, afraid of being deported in a raid, did not return to their jobs. The result is that most of the women are also unemployed and unable to be employed.

For women who did not immediately hear about the raids, there was also the fear and confusion about the location of their sons and husbands. Some women went for days without knowing what had happened. As fear turned into confirmation that men were being held for deportation, women’s anxieties and stressers went up.