San Diego Restaurant, The French Gourmet Inc., indicted recently for knowingly making false attestations on I-9 Forms, hiring employees unauthorized to work in the U.S., and employing those aliens after learning of their ineligibility to work. U.S. v. The French Gourmet Inc. is the case, and you can read it here:
In May 2008, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents executed a criminal search warrant at, The French Gourmet, and have taken workers suspected of being illegally in the country into custody. ICE has arrived at worksites with both criminal and civil warrants. It has searched businesses, frozen bank accounts, and arrested not only employees but also employers. This recent indicment sends a clear message to employers.
We keep reminding employers to ensure compliance with the I-9 requirements under IRCA, a company should establish an I-9 policy that includes:
* The proper and timely completion and retention of Form I-9 for all employees hired after November 6, 1986;
* Zero-tolerance for the employment of individuals who do not provide the proper identity and employment eligibility documents for Form I-9;
* A tickler system for I-9s that require reverification;
* I-9 training for all company representatives who are part of the recruitment, orientation, and hiring processes for the company; and
* Regularly scheduled in-house I-9 audits.
Conducting self-audits puts a company in better position if it becomes the subject of an ICE investigation. While employers cannot verify whether documents used for employment authorization are authentic, self-audits establish good-faith compliance.