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September 2008
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Shipley president pleads guilty to hiring illegal immigrants

6:17 PM Fri, Sep 05, 2008 |
Juanita Jimenez
 E-mail

Four top officials of Houston-based Shipley Do-Nuts pleaded guilty to conspiring to harbor illegal aliens, federal authorities confirmed on Friday. Shipley president Lawrence Shipley III and three of the company’s managers admitted guilt after reaching a plea bargain with federal prosecutors.

On Friday, the company also pleaded guilty to similar charges.

After the pleas were announced, Shipley III said in an interview with the Houston Chronicle that the company would be “absolutely committed to immigration compliance in its hiring practices,”

Immigration officials raided the company’s distribution warehouse in April and took more than two dozen illegal immigrant workers into custody. The company not only hired the illegal workers, but also built housing for them, federal authorities said.

For his part, Shipley III – the grandson of the donut chain’s founder – pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge of employing undocumented workers and was put on six months probation and will pay a $6,000 fine.

Former warehouse manager Jimmy Rivera; current warehouse manager Julian Garcia and warehouse supervisor Christopher Halsey all pleaded guilty to hiring illegal immigrants and were also sentenced to six months probation and fined.

Shipley agreed to pay a $1.334 million fine as part of the plea bargain. Sentencing for the company is scheduled for Dec. 19.





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