DES MOINES, Iowa – The owners and managers of Agriprocessors, the nation’s largest kosher meat processing plant, were charged on Tuesday with more than 9,000 misdemeanors alleging they had hired minors and had children younger than 16 handling dangerous equipment.

Two employees were also reportedly charged in federal court. The state and federal charges are the first against operators of the Agriprocessors plant in Postville, Iowa. The plan was the focus of one of the largest immigration raids in U.S. history in May.

The complaint filed by the Iowa attorney general's office reportedly said the violations involved 32 illegal-immigrant children under age 18, including seven who were younger than 16. Aside from handling dangerous equipment, the complaint also alleges children were exposed to dangerous chemicals such as chlorine solutions and dry ice.

Charged are the company itself, Agriprocessors Inc.; plant owner Abraham Aaron Rubashkin; former plant manager Sholom Rubashkin; human resources manager Elizabeth Billmeyer; and Laura Althouse and Karina Freund, managers in the company's human resources division, reports said.


Source: Associated Press