21 Apr 2017
- By Emmanuel T. Erediano - email@example.com - Variety News Staff
BEILIDA Overseas (CNMI) staffers who were arrested at the Francisco C. Ada/Saipan International Airport three weeks ago have been indicted in federal court on two counts of harboring illegal aliens.
Hui Lu, Wencai Guo, Xiufang Qi and Hongwei Ma were about to leave the island when Federal Bureau of Investigation agents arrested them at the airport on April 5.
The prosecution said they knowingly hired “tourists” to perform construction work at the Imperial Pacific casino-hotel project site in Garapan.
In the four-page indictment, Assistant U.S. Attorney James Benedetto, states that from March 8, 2017 through March 22, 2017 Hui Lu, Wen Cai Guo and Hong Wei Ma, knowing and in disregard of the fact that an alien, namely Yuanyuo Hu, had entered the U.S. in violation of law, did conceal, harbor and shield from detection and attempt to conceal, harbor, and shield from detection, such alien in buildings and other places, which resulted in the death of Yuanyou Hu, 43.
Hu died after falling from a scaffold at the Imperial Pacific construction site in Garapan.
Moreover, the indictment states, on or about Feb. 7, 2017 through March 22, 2017, Lu, Guo, Xuifang and Ma knowing and in reckless disregard of the fact that aliens C.Z., W.L., C.W., F.Y., S.X. and Y.S. had come to, entered and remained in the U.S. in violation of the law, did conceal, harbor, and shield from detection, and attempt to conceal, harbor, and shield from detection such aliens in buildings and other places for the purpose of commercial advantage and private financial gain.
Benedetto also filed a notice of criminal forfeiture for any conveyance, including any vessel, vehicle, or aircraft, used in the commission of the offense; any property, real or personal, that constitutes or is derived from or is traceable to the proceeds obtained directly or indirectly from the commission of the offense; and any property, real or personal used to facilitate or intended to be used to facilitate the commission of the offense.
The property to be forfeited includes, but is not limited to the following: any leaseholds for work premises, barracks, employer-provided housing, VIP accommodations, employer-provided tools, computers, and office equipment; vehicles, boats, planes, heavy equipment, and other conveyances, bank accounts and cash.
According to the FBI, the defendants are part of Beilida Overseas (CNMI)’s scheme to employ 398 undocumented construction workers who came to Saipan as “tourists.”
Beilida is one of the construction subcontractors of Imperial Pacific International.
The FBI said as early as Jan. 20, 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor on Saipan had begun scrutinizing the labor practices of Beilida Overseas (CNMI).