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KWBB CW10 South Texas :: News - Top Stories - Human smuggling in SETX

Human smuggling in SETX

SOUTHEAST TEXAS- by Haley Bull

A husband and wife face the possibility of spending up to 20 years in federal prison for racketeering violations. Lina Sun, 54, and Chenglun Ma, 57, both of Houston, pled guilty this week to running a job placement agency that recruited, transported and placed illegal immigrants at restaurants in Port Arthur and other cities.

According to federal prosecutors, the couple from Houston ran an organization that recruited primarily Hispanic undocumented workers for Chinese restaurants, including one in Nederland and one in Port Arthur. The employees worked long hours for low pay and received little training. According to court documents, they lived in conditions investigators called "deplorable," including 18 people in one 2,000 square foot home.

Though the men and women endured the conditions with no real way to leave and go home, they were not victims of human smuggling.

What this case and human smuggling have in common is the desire of undocumented workers to work in the United States and the fact they can become targets for those who want to take advantage of them.

KFDM's Haley Bull traveled to Houston to interview Homeland Security Investigation agents on human smuggling in Southeast Texas.


Human smuggling in SETX

Thursday, June 5 2014, 02:03 PM CDT
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