- Police in 2011 reportedly warned the head of security at one of President Donald Trump’s golf clubs that one of their workers was suspected of being in the US illegally.
- The police report, obtained by The Washington Post, comes amid an ongoing controversy over the Trump Organisation’s hiring practices.
- Dozens of immigrants have now come forward publicly to say they worked for Trump’s properties illegally, and that their managers were aware of their immigration statuses.
- The Trump organisation has denied that it was aware of employing unauthorised immigrants, and recently fired at least 18 workers.
President Donald Trump’s golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey, was reportedly aware as early as 2011 that at least one employee was suspected of using fake immigration documents, according to a police report obtained by The Washington Post.
The report comes amid an ongoing controversy over the Trump Organisation’s hiring practices. Since December, immigrants who currently or formerly worked at Trump properties – including 14 in New York and at least 18 in New Jersey – have spoken to The Washington Post and The New York Times to say they worked at the golf courses illegally. Some allege that their managers were aware of their immigration statuses.
The revelations contrast with Trump’s frequent tirades against illegal immigration, which he has said robs American workers of jobs.
The Trump Organisation has maintained it was unaware that unauthorised immigrants were employed illegally by the company, and it has fired at least 18 workers in recent weeks, according to The Post.
But the 2011 police report reveals the first known, documented instance where Trump Organisation officials were apparently warned about the immigration statuses of its workers.
What the police report shows
The police report shows that local Bedminster Township police officers told the club’s head of security, Hank Protinsky, that one of the club’s employees was suspected of using fake documents. Police questioned the worker, whose documents identified him as Reinaldo Villareal, as part of an investigation into a hit-and-run incident on the golf course.
“Villareal voluntarily without questioning told me that his real name was Fredis Otero and that he was working under a false name and social security number,” Officer Thomas Polito wrote, adding that Otero showed him a Colombian passport and his allegedly fake green card and Social Security number.
Polito said Otero told him he had obtained a three-month “vacation visa” that expired in June 2010. After that, Otero said he used a Social Security number a friend had given him, according to the police report.
Polito wrote that he arrested Otero and alerted the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. But it’s unclear if Otero was ever deported, and The Post could not reach him nor Protinsky for comment.
The Trump Organisation didn’t comment
Eric Trump, a vice president of the Trump Organisation, declined to comment to The Post about the latest group of immigrants to come forward and say they helped build the Bedminster course from the ground up.
“Many of us helped him get what he has today,” Dario Angulo, a former Bedminster grounds crew member, told The Post. “This golf course was built by illegals.”
The Trump organisation did not immediately respond to INSIDER’s requests for comment, but has previously said it would take action against any employees found to have submitted fake work authorization documents.
“We have tens of thousands of employees across our properties and have very strict hiring practices,” the Trump organisation said in a December 2018 statement. “If any employee submitted false documentation in an attempt to circumvent the law, they will be terminated immediately.”
- Read more:
- An unauthorised immigrant who makes Trump’s bed at his Bedminster golf resort says ‘we are tired of the abuse, the insults, the way he talks about us’
- One of Trump’s golf clubs reportedly fired 12 unauthorised immigrant workers
- State and FBI investigators are reportedly probing allegations that Trump’s golf club gave fake green cards to undocumented workers
- A Republican lawmaker tried to kick 2 Parkland fathers out of a congressional hearing on gun violence and said the real danger facing Americans is illegal immigration
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