“We are watching and we are coming”
ICE raids North Texas factory, arrests 160 immigrant workers
30 August 2018
In what is being described as the largest workplace raid conducted in the past decade, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested 160 immigrant workers in a North Texas factory. The raid was conducted as part of an ongoing criminal investigation into Load Trail, a company that makes vehicle trailers. The company began as a family-owned operation in 1996 and has now grown to employ over 500 workers. The arrested migrant workers, allegedly undocumented, were working at the Sumner-based facility, located 100 miles northeast of Dallas.
The raid, carried out jointly by ICE and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), involved a massive display of force with the aid of Air and Marine Operations (an agency within the US Customs and Border Protection) and 300 field agents, who swooped into the factory to carry out the arrests.
Katrina Berger, the special agent in charge, told the Dallas Morning News that the raid went smoothly without any serious incidents and that ICE had “taken steps to ensure it’ll be conducted in a humane and safe manner.” Berger also added, ominously, that there was “nothing that necessitated medical attention.”
This version of a smooth, humane operation is in fact quite different from what transpired. Dennis Perry, a 42-year-old worker at the Load Trail factory, described a far more frightening and chaotic scene. Talking to the Morning News, Perry said that soon after his break during the first shift, he saw armed agents pouring in from all the entrances: “They just came and raided from every entrance there was …[and then] they drew their guns and told everyone to hit the…