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One community leader familiar with the raid said as many as 60 were arrested. Authorities would not release any numbers. Witnesses reported that vans began carrying workers away from the Southside plant in the morning and continued as late as 7 p.m.
The arrests were part of a nine-state sweep Wednesday that arrested seven executives and detained hundreds of employees of IFCO Systems after a yearlong criminal investigation. IFCO officials in Indianapolis could not be reached for comment.
Raids took place at several locations in upstate New York and in Biglerville, Pa., Charlotte, N.C., Cincinnati, Houston, Indianapolis, Phoenix, Richmond, Va., and Westborough, Mass.
The seven current and former IFCO Systems managers were arrested on charges they conspired to transport, harbor and encourage illegal workers to live in the U.S. for commercial advantage and private financial gain, said Glenn T. Suddaby, chief federal prosecutor in Albany, N.Y., where some arrests were made.