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NEARLY 100 DETAINED BY I.C.E. AT GRAINGER COUNTY SLAUGHTERHO– USE

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A raid by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the IRS and the Tennessee Highway Patrol resulted in 97 individuals being detained yesterday at Southeastern Provisions in Bean Station. During the raid, 97 people were found who were subject to removal from the United States. Ten of those were arrested on federal criminal charges, one on state charges and 86 on administrative charges. Of the 86 administrative arrests, 54 were placed in detention and 32 were released. Those detained were taken to the National Guard armory in Morristown for processing. Officials say multiple withdrawals of more than $100,000 were made from Southeastern Provisions bank accounts. On IRS forms, Southeastern Provisions reported only 44 employees to the government. But based on aerial surveillance, 87 vehicles were found parked at the plant, leading authorities to believe the plant was employing 30-40 more undocumented immigrants. Based on numbers from the investigation, officials estimate if Southeastern Provisions had properly reported wages to the IRS, they would have an additional $2.5 million payroll taxes from 2013-2016, on top of what they had already paid. While on the scene, federal officials seized bank records, employee hours logs, contents of any vaults at the business, employee files and other documents.

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