$1 million fine for hiring illegal immigrants approved
By STEVE BROWN
SEATTLE -- In a plea agreement approved Tuesday afternoon, a Washington-based organic herb company must pay a $1 million fine for hiring illegal immigrants.
Three top executives of HerbCo International Inc., based in Duvall, Wash., admitted they rehired illegal workers they had dismissed after a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement audit determined their documentation was falsified.
An ICE official said the penalties that had been agreed to beforehand were accepted without a hitch.
The HerbCo executives -- CEO Ted Andrews III, vice president David Lykins Jr. and general manager Debra Howard, general manager -- each pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor offense and were sentenced to one year of probation for aiding and abetting a pattern or practice of employing illegal aliens.