U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE") reports that on December 13, 2010, a Dunkin Donuts manager, George Valvanis ("Valvanis"), plead guilty to one count of hiring unauthorized workers and to one count of using a false attestation in an immigration document.
Valvanis allegedly managed multiple Dunkin' Donuts stores located in Portland, Maine. ICE claims that he knowingly employed eighteen (18) unauthorized workers at those Duncan Donuts stores between 2001 and 2009. Valvanis allegedly faces a maximum prison term of five (5) years on the false attestation charge and six (6) months on the employing unauthorized worker charge.
Corporate Immigration Attorney's Take
This case is an excellent example of why it is important for everyone in your company's hiring structure to comply with immigration law when it comes to hiring employees. ICE will go after any employer for immigration violations no matter what the person's position in the businesses hiring structure.
Recently we have seen ICE going after business owners, CEOs, and Presidents in the companies for their company's immigration violations. However, ICE also expressly stated that it will investigate and prosecute anyone in the business's hiring structure.
Mr. Valvanis was not the CEO or President of Duncan Donuts. He did not own a single Duncan Donuts franchise. He was simply a franchise manager.
It is vital that everyone in your hiring structure is apprised of their legal obligations when it comes to hiring employees and the potential consequences for non-compliance. Employees in the hiring structure must be trained, not only for company's sake, but for their own sake as well.
Dunkin' Donuts is not the only doughnut company that ICE has recently targeted. Please also see information on the ICE enforcement against Shipley Do-Nuts.
Pat Mack Corporate Immigration Attorney Recommended Training