Former Howard Industry personnel director to appear in federal court - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Former Howard Industry personnel director to appear in federal court

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The former personnel director of a company targeted in the nation's largest workplace raid on illegal immigrants is scheduled to be in federal court Wednesday for a change of plea hearing.

Jose Humberto Gonzalez had pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and identity theft charges, among others, related to the raid on Howard Industries in Laurel on Aug. 25, 2008.

Nearly 600 suspected illegal immigrants were detained at the plant, which makes electrical transformers.

The hearing is scheduled in U.S. District Court in Hattiesburg.

Several attorneys representing Gonzalez didn't immediately respond Tuesday to messages. Prosecutors say Gonzalez hired illegal immigrants he knew had stolen identities and instructed others to obtain fake documents.

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