United States officials raid 7-Eleven stores amid crackdown on illegal

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents serve an employment audit notice at a 7 Eleven convenience store Wednesday in Los Angeles

John Sandweg, an acting ICE director under Obama, said significant fines instilled fear in employers and draining resources from other enforcement priorities.

The newspaper said the licensing department has regularly - 20 to 30 times a month - been providing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) with photos and driver's license applications.

Federal immigration agents conducted a surprise sweep of almost 100 7-Eleven convenience stores across the nation Wednesday.

But the ICE did not identify the nationalities of those arrested.

Meanwhile the agents targeted about 100 stores nationwide, broadening an investigation that began with a 4 year old case against a franchisee on New York's Long Island. "Today's actions send a strong message to USA businesses that hire and employ an illegal workforce", ICE's Acting Director Thomas D. Homan said in a statement. "ICE will continue its efforts to protect jobs for American workers by eliminating unfair competitive advantages for companies that exploit illegal immigration", Homan said.

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DOL's practices contradict Inslee's executive order last February that Washington remains a state that "doesn't utilize state employees as agents of federal immigration services", as well as State Attorney General Bob Ferguson's demand for privacy for undocumented immigrants in his suit against Motel 6 over its release of guest lists to federal agents of ICE. Accordingly 7- Eleven Stores Inc., based in Irving, Texas, with more than 8,600 stores in the United States, didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

It added that it had "terminated" the agreements of franchises convicted of violating the laws.

Homan characterized the operation as a new front in the Trump administration's broader immigration crackdown and its effort to increase deportations.

Store owners and managers will have three days to provide the agency with information about the immigration status of its employees, Bennett said.

This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire.

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