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Federal officials arrested nearly 300 workers at chicken processing plants in five states yesterday, according to the Dallas Morning News. The workers at Pilgrim’s Pride poultry plants were arrested on suspicion of committing identity theft.
The arrests were made in Batesville, Arkansas; Live Oak, Florida; Moorefield, West Virginia; Chattanooga, Tennessee; and Mt. Pleasant, Texas. Federal officials said the theft or sale of Social Security numbers were growing concerns. Pilgrim’s Pride was not charged in this action.
Immigration officials have conducted several such raids, primarily in rural communities. Swift & Co. meat plants were raided in December 2006. Investigations into the Pilgrim’s Pride workers began over a year ago.