No jail for farmers who hired illegal immigrants

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A couple who admit hiring illegal immigrants for years at their Michigan dairy farm have been sentenced to probation.

John and Anja Verhaar could have been sent to jail. The sentences ordered Tuesday in federal court in Bay City will allow them to return to their 5,000-cow dairy farm in the Thumb near Bad Axe.

Last summer, the Verhaars pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges.

They admit they employed 78 illegal immigrants from 2000 through 2007. Many were hired on multiple occasions using different names or Social Security numbers.

The government will be collecting more than $2.7 million in penalties from the couple and the farm. Many businesses that provide goods or services to Aquila Farms had urged the judge to keep the Verhaars out of jail.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.



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Jeannie wilson    
Hanford, California  |  November, 09, 2011 at 09:00 AM

2.7 Million!! Oh yeah, I will just write you a check out of petty cash! Seriously?!

kevin musser    
OHIO  |  November, 09, 2011 at 07:49 PM

Have you considered the fact that no one else will do this work. Have you considered that the only illegal thing aliens did was cross the border and since then they have worked hard, paid taxes and left their families in the hope of providing an existence for them. Have you considered that the US government has made it almost impossible for 90% of immigrants to be able to legally become a US citizen? Have you considered that the average household makes more than 10 times the income these aliens live on? Have you considered that they are human beings, made in the image of God and have dreams and can make a great contribution to our society just like our forfathers who were also aliens

Teresa    
sw Wisconsin  |  November, 11, 2011 at 05:03 AM

I'm so sick of this commet No one else will do the work! well maybe that big ass dairy shouldn't have been built in the first place. One of the rules when you establish a business is to have a reddy work force in that location people won't work on these dairies because they pay $5.00 cash an hour then their illegalk go down to the county offices sign up for every free hand out there is the taxpayers shouldn't have to pick up the tab for your work force. The big dairies in this area pay $5.00 cash out of there hay accounts then their workers have food stamps, rent assistance. energy assistance, wic, medical, etc Most likely it's a govenment finance dairy most of them are or a government guarenteed loan same thing you never see help wanted signs or adds in the papers the illegals just change there names and keep on working at these dairies because the owners basisly want to be grain farmers and have nothing todo with the cattle these big dairies should never have been built in the first place!

Teresa    
sw Wisconsin  |  November, 11, 2011 at 05:03 AM

I'm so sick of this commet No one else will do the work! well maybe that big ass dairy shouldn't have been built in the first place. One of the rules when you establish a business is to have a reddy work force in that location people won't work on these dairies because they pay $5.00 cash an hour then their illegalk go down to the county offices sign up for every free hand out there is the taxpayers shouldn't have to pick up the tab for your work force. The big dairies in this area pay $5.00 cash out of there hay accounts then their workers have food stamps, rent assistance. energy assistance, wic, medical, etc Most likely it's a govenment finance dairy most of them are or a government guarenteed loan same thing you never see help wanted signs or adds in the papers the illegals just change there names and keep on working at these dairies because the owners basisly want to be grain farmers and have nothing todo with the cattle these big dairies should never have been built in the first place!

em vanells    
kellnersville  |  November, 12, 2011 at 01:08 PM

oh , yeh , let 5,000 cows starve and no milk in the stores ( duh , DOESN't milk come from stores ) if an ill eagle alien {comes down from outerspace then put them on a rocket and send them back IF someome that is a bonefied citizen is willing to do the same job with the same quality of service ,screw the few that never did a days work in their life but think they can push their nazi agenda on the actual people that live here


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