Leaders of California ministry charged with forced labor
(My first question when I saw the news was, what are the names of the leaders? Other than the leader of the scam, the others aren’t named in most of the US news stories. But, as is so often the case the UK Daily Mail has them with pictures!—ed)
A dozen leaders of a California-based ministry were arrested Tuesday on charges that they used homeless people as forced labor, holding them in locked group homes and forcing them to panhandle up to nine hours a day, six days a week, U.S. prosecutors said.
The former pastor of Imperial Valley Ministries, Victor Gonzalez, and the others were arrested in San Diego, El Centro near the Southern California border with Mexico and Brownsville, Texas. They face charges of conspiracy, forced labor, document servitude and benefits fraud.
The El Centro-based ministry has about 30 affiliate church throughout the United States and Mexico and runs five group homes in Southern California, authorities said.
Dozens of victims, many of them homeless and some as young as 17, were lured to the group homes by the promise of food and shelter until they were able to return home.
Instead, the ministry that billed itself as rehabilitating drug addicts kept them inside deadbolted group homes, took their personal belongings and identification documents and refused to return them, stole their food stamp and welfare benefits and in some cases threatened to take away their children if they left, according to a grand jury indictment filed Aug. 23 and unsealed Tuesday.
“The indictment alleges an appalling abuse of power by church officials who preyed on vulnerable homeless people with promises of a warm bed and meals,” U.S. Attorney Robert Brewer said at a news conference. “These victims were held captive, stripped of their humble financial means, their identification, their freedom and their dignity.”
“Windows were nailed shut at some group home locations, leading a desperate 17-year-old victim to break a window, escape, and run to a neighboring property to call police,” said a statement from the U.S. attorney’s office.
Now check out the UK Daily Mail story, here, where we learn the names of the ‘new Americans’ ripping off extremely vulnerable homeless people.
Former IVM Pastor Victor Gonzalez, 40, of Brownsville, Texas was among those arrested in the probe along with Jose Demara Flores, aka Joe Flores, 52, Mercedes ‘Mercy Diaz’, 37, and Susan Christine Leyva, 39.
El Centro, California church leaders Arnoldo Bugarin, 47, Jose Gaytan, 47, Sonia Murillo, 51, Sergio Partida, 32, Ana Karen Robles-Ortiz, aka Karen Partida, 29, and Azucena Torres, aka Susana Bugarin, 43, were also booked.
San Diego leaders Jose ‘Chito’ Morales, 47, was arrested in San Diego.
So much for the entrepreneurial spirit of ‘new Americans.’
The Indictment is here. If anyone finds some juicy bits that weren’t mentioned by the media, let me know. For example, did money leave the country?
Malkin’s timing is excellent because as I write this the Trump Administration is wrestling with an important legal requirement. In the coming weeks they must decide how many refugees (if any!) will be admitted to the US in FY2020 which begins in 21 days!
Every year since the Refugee Act of 1980 was signed into law by Jimmy Carter, the President determines how many UN-selected refugees will be welcomed to a town near you. Needless to say the refugee industry is in high gear putting pressure on the White House to get the numbers as high as they can (they are demanding 90,000) because the refugee contractors financial survival depends on high numbers!
Therefore, the timing of the release of Michelle Malkin’s new book couldn’t be better.
Here, at Breitbart, she pulls no punches and tells us about it and directs your attention to 60 reasons (60 Islamists we welcomed to become ‘new Americans’ while they came to do us harm.)
By the way, Trump can legally set the refugee ceiling for FY2020 at Zero!
Exclusive — Michelle Malkin: 60 Terrifying Reasons Trump Is Right to Reduce Refugees
Here are three facts that the most hysterical voices attacking the Trump administration’s proposal to radically reduce or freeze refugee admissions don’t want you to know:
1) They make billions of dollars off the federal refugee resettlement racket;
2) They are protected by the Open Borders Inc. media, which routinely whitewashes the gobsmacking financial self-interest of the “Let Them All In” leeches; and
3) They are never held accountable when untold numbers of the world’s most wretchedly violent and aggrieved refugees come here to sabotage the American Dream.
While left-wing religious groups, tax-exempt non-profits tied or allied to George Soros, and the amnesty-shilling Catholic Church scream “No hate, no fear, everyone is welcome here!” at the top of their lungs, American neighborhoods are being overrun by dangerous foreign criminals and jihad plotters.
David Miliband, president and CEO of International Rescue Committee, attacked the White House plan to slash refugee numbers from an Obama-era high of 100,000 to less than the current historic low of 30,000 as “inhumane.”
Is it because cutting the numbers would cut in to Miliband’s first-class travel and business lunch tabs? Malkin Truth-O-Meter: mostly likely true!
What Miliband neglects to mention in his diatribe against President Trump that his organization is one of 9 behemoth government contractors that works with the hostile United Nations and encrusted State Department social justice warriors to import thousands of new refugees every year with little input from the communities in which they are dumped. Miliband earns nearly a million-dollar salary*** and by one estimate, IRC has raked in nearly $900 million in refugee resettlement profits over the last decade. When you cut through the Statue of Liberty smokescreen of the open borders “charities,” the math is clear:
Reduced refugees means reduced cash flow.
Zero refugees means zero cash flow.
Why should taxpayers continue to see their hard-earned money siphoned away to feed the Trump Resistance Machine and Democrat Party’s Permanent Ruling Majority Project?
There are even more compelling reasons to throttle the refugee flow. According to the logic-twisting, ICE-doxxing cheerleaders at the New York Times, refugee reductions are the real threat to our nation because if we don’t keep importing hordes of Muslim translators from Iraq or Afghanistan, it would “undermine” our national security.
***And see mypost here at RRWa few days ago about the push to admit more Iraqi and Afghan translators. You will see the proof of Miliband’s obscene salary!
By the way, I am seeing a huge push by the contractors and their media lackeys to pressure the President at this very moment to agree to admit tens of thousands of UN-selected refugees to be your new neighbors.
In the near future, we will be moving ‘Frauds and Crooks’ to a new, secure hosting company. There will be times when the blog may be unavailable, but rest assured that we are not going away. Once we begin the move, it may take a few days to complete the move. Please be patient and check back.
HIAS, the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, another of the nine federal contractors employed by the US State Department to place refugees into your towns and cities, is focusing on hiring lawyers for the law breakers at the southern border. [For new readers, see nine contractors inthis post.—ed]
HIAS receives more than half of its income from you via your tax dollars to take care of legal refugees who were selected and screened, and yet they are working feverishly to be sure the illegal aliens on the southern border have legal representation.
Recently they sent out an appeal for financial help. Mind you! financial help for an organization that got $24,493,702 directly from the US Treasury in 2016 (according to its Form 990 here)!
Why is our money going to a group promoting a progressive political agenda that large numbers of Americans oppose (if they only knew!)?
This is a screenshot of their recent appeal for more moola…
Below is the page showing their federal grants. Notice that their privately raised dollars that year amounted to $17,361,702, less than half of their income.
I think the fact that they can’t raise enough private money for their ‘good works’ signals that the general public just isn’t that interested in their mission.
If you go to page 9 notice that if they weren’t getting federal funding they would die.
Salary and employee expenses amounted to $20,686,120 and their office expenses, rent and travel amounted to another $7,106,664 while they only took in just over $17 million in private dollars.
Again, if they weren’t getting federal funding they would most likely die. Or, they would have to slash staff or significantly cut the high salaries of top brass!
Have a look at their top salaried positions.
And, btw, let me say that if they were a truly private non-profit (or a for-profit) their salaries would be none of our business, but they aren’t.
They are effectively a government agency which means they can’t keep this information from the taxpayers who pay a significant portion of their salaries!
Endnote: Readers may have noticed many refugee-related stories here at Frauds and Crooks. I am still working to restore Refugee Resettlement Watch and once it is done (soon I think!), many stories like this one will be posted there. However, there is a ‘Charity fraud’ category here at Frauds and Crooks, so stories like this fit right in!
Maybe it might best be described as Hating Trump Voters 101.
I’m not spending a lot of time on this, too much backed up in my posting queue, but I just saw this Opinion piece at the Philadelphia Inquirerthat tells us to see the Southern Poverty Law Center‘s “Hate at School” report. (I’m betting there is nothing in it about how to treat evenTrump supporters with respect.)
Do your kids have the “emotional intelligence” to be ready for the 2020 Presidential election? Indeed are they ready to confront “racism, sexism, and heteronormativity” this year?
If not, may I suggest home schooling!
To confront the 2020 election cycle, we need emotional intelligence in schools | Opinion
In the history classes I teach, I begin with a digital dialogue called “What Gives Us Pause.” Before we begin formal instruction, I invite students to share with each other the social and political currents that worry them most, or make them most hopeful for the future. This dialogue unleashes a flood of student voices.
Every year, students name wars that tear nations apart, gentrification that disrupts the fabric of urban communities, environmental crises, and hate and prejudice. I expect them to talk about the most recent incidents of mass shootings and gun violence right here in Philadelphia. Very quickly, this bonds the classroom in ways that prepare us to support and hold each other accountable, and name patterns of behavior we witness — in the news cycle, on social media, and in our own lived experiences — as the year unfolds.
When I began teaching in 2007, the first years felt sterile. I was discouraged from getting too political or confronting social power structures like racism, patriarchy, or class. I was trained to believe that teachers had to create “safe spaces” that were apolitical and socially neutral. We celebrated civil rights victories but did not discuss the dark legacy of slavery. We didn’t talk about the environment. Textbook-driven instruction drove my practice at the expense of student voices and authentic connections with each other.
Grrrrr! “Student voices!” “Authentic connections!” But, did they learn anything about the Revolutionary War or the Civil War?
I digress…. after a recent visit to the Antietam Battlefield, a friend whispered a question—what about all the northern white families who lost their husbands, fathers and sons fighting to free the slaves, don’t they deserve reparations?
Jobs goes on….
Too often, public conversations stop at simply naming transgressions: identifying something as hurtful or difficult and then moving on. In other cases, policy-driven mandates aiming to keep discourse respectful — like bans on the use of specific words, music, readings, or opinions — leave little room for gray areas. School communities, on the other hand, can model practical responses to and discussions of these moments that young people can use their entire lives, including when confronting racism, sexism, and heteronormativity. [You can bet any students who support our President will never emote in Jobs’ classes!—-ed]
The stakes feel high. The special report “Hate at School”by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance project showed a sharp increase in hate and bias in schools since the 2016 election.
Thankfully, the “Hate at School” report offers many entry points for engaging students, educators, and families in inquiry around how to notice, name, and combat acts of bias and hatred on an ongoing basis — not only when individual moments grow large and public. This defines the work that educators across the nation prepare to engage as school resumes, just over a year out from the 2020 election. [It is all about 2020 to the Progressives.—ed]
Are you looking for a project? Even if your kids are grown, how about looking into what is being taught in your local schools?
My post over the weekend about Michigan teachers being indoctrinated with incomplete information about Islam, see it here, was a huge success on social media.
Fascinating that the beat goes on at the Southern Poverty Law Center. You might think the media (and people like Jobs) would hesitate for a few minutes about using the work of the hypocrites at the SPLC after the incredible airing of their dirty (racist!) linen earlier last spring.
I think its a good proposal if the goal is to bring attention to the issue and to twist the tails of Progressives, however it has no practical purpose in my opinion, and, here is why:
People (refugees are here legally!) are permitted to move anywhere in America and none of us wants that permission revoked! Freedom of movement is at the very heart of our most cherished ideals as Americans.
And, since Horowitz mentions Lewiston, Maine in his piece, and since I’m too lazy and too rushed to parse it all, how about if I simply repost most of a post I published at Refugee Resettlement Watchnearly ten years ago entitled,
Somali Migration to Maine: it’s the welfare magnet, stupid
It is about the SECONDARY MIGRATION to Maine by Somalis in search of welfare, and to escape Atlanta, Georgia where they had been placed by refugee contractors working for the US State Department.
Lewiston was primarily transformed by secondary migration!
They didn’t stay where they had been placed!
And, that is why I say the Trump proposal might make us think we, in local communities, will have some say in the process, the truth is we won’t!
Lewiston, Maine didn’t want them initially, but now it seems most of Maine is being transformed by Africans on the move with the encouragement of the Open Borders Left.
Yesterday I brought to readers’ attention that now that the Somali population in Lewiston, ME is large and well-established, the demands for accomodation of Muslim religious practices has begun, see CAIR threatens,here. Among those who study Islamic supremacism around the world, this is known as the Stealth Jihad (see our entire categoryhere)—changing a country from within to bring about Islamic dominance.
In my post I attributed a role to Catholic Charities in bringing the first Somalis to Maine, and after a little research I found that assertion was accurate. However, the majority of the thousands of Somalis now continuing to upset Lewiston are secondary migrants resettled by Catholic Charities and other federally contracted agencies in Georgia.
Here is the best summary (Free Republic still has full Newhouse News Service article here) I’ve found so far about how Lewiston got to the point it’s at now with CAIR breathing down the necks of school administrators. I’ve only taken a bit of this very long and thorough 2002 article, so please read the whole thing.
LEWISTON — Every week, another four or five Somali families arrive in this workaday city on the Androscoggin River.
They are refugees from the clan-wracked ruins of their homeland on the Horn of Africa, from years of waiting in camps in Kenya. And they are migrants from their place of first resettlement in America, more often than not trekking 1,000 miles from the heat and multihued humanity of metropolitan Atlanta to this sparse, wintry, whitest of all states.
They are nomads, their ancient instincts honed to a 21st century edge. Pioneers in a new world, they discovered Lewiston and claimed a bit of it for themselves.
“It’s like finding a small island in the middle of the Pacific,” says Mohammed Abdi, who last year moved here from Decatur, Ga., and was quickly hired as the liaison between the city’s schools and the burgeoning Somali community. “We put it on the map.”
They were originally resettled with American blacks and that wasn’t going so well, an issue we have discussed at RRW on previous occasions.
In their exodus, they say they are looking for peace and quiet, cheaper housing, a more benevolent welfare system, better schools and a place to raise their children — families of seven or more are common —with fewer perils and temptations. That they are leaving a metro area renowned as an African-American mecca to resettle in Maine, home to fewer than 7,000 blacks in 2000, is less a matter of irony than intent, given the prickly state of their relations with African-Americans and a desire to protect their children from assimilating too quickly.
Scouts sent out! But, I will bet you anything they had some hints from their friends at Catholic Charities which was already resettling Somalis in Portland, ME.
Fed up with life in Atlanta —he was robbed twice — Abdiaziz Ali said members of the Somali community there researched other places on the Internet, comparing crime rates, the cost of housing, test scores. Then they sent scouts to a handful of cities — Kansas City, Mo., Nashville, Tenn., San Diego, Houston and El Paso in Texas, and Portland and Lewiston in Maine.
Maine was preferred, and Portland was full.
It is cold but the welfare is oh so good! Note when you read the article that some of the men stayed back in Georgia to continue to work while the wives and kids went to Maine for the welfare.
Indeed, in moving from Georgia to Maine, Somalis are trading one of the nation’s least generous welfare systems for one of its most generous.
Lewiston provides general assistance to anyone in need, splitting the cost with the state. Such relief was unavailable in Clarkston. In Georgia, there is a four-year time limit for receiving Temporary Assistance to Needy Families. In Maine it’s five, but even that can be extended. About a quarter of Lewiston’s Somali families receive that form of welfare, according to the state. And in Maine, a state-funded program assists single parents while they attend college.
There is a waiting list for public housing in Lewiston, but not nearly as long as back in Georgia. About a third of the more than 90 apartments at Hillview, Lewiston’s largest public housing project, have Somali tenants, and about 35 more Somali families have received Section 8 vouchers, which subsidize the rent on private apartments.
Fulfilling that expectation [that people work] is complicated because so many of the Somali families are single mothers and children, the fathers dead, missing, still in Africa or still in Atlanta.
“The men don’t like it here — it’s too cold or too quiet or too behind,” says Fatuma Hussein, whose own husband still drives a taxi in Atlanta, making frequent visits to her and their three young children.
The role of Catholic Charities
There were no Somalis in Lewiston prior to the colonization that began after 9/11.
Note in the article that Somalis are quoted as saying Portland was “full.” That would be full of primarily Somalis and Sudanese resettled in Maine by Catholic Charities, the only refugee resettlement contractor in the state for 30 years. That makes it easy for us to check the numbers Catholic Charities brought. Not nearly the tens of thousands resettled in other states, but from 1983-2005, Catholic Charities resettled 498 Somalis and 607 Sudanese (I mention the Sudanese because we have heard lots about problems with the “Sudanese community” of Portland recently). You will see later that the number 498 is inaccurate because in just 3 individual years during that time period, reported in annual reports to Congress, below, the number exceeds 498.
To this day, Catholic Charities is resettling new Somalis in Maine. The stats aren’t out for 2009 but in 2007 the number of Somalis resettled was 118 and in 2008 it was 60 (that drop may be because of the discovery by the State Department of the fraud in the family reunification program).
I don’t believe the Somali scouts found Lewiston all on their own—-I think there is a really good chance that earlier resettled Maine Somalis and Catholic Charities (CC) in Atlanta tipped-off the scouts to the lucrative welfare in Lewiston. So, I checked the Office of Refugee Resettlement annual reports to Congress for the years 1997, 1998, and 1999 to see how many Somalis CC had brought to Maine in the years preceding the migration. Sure enough, in 1997, CC resettled 228 Somalis to Maine, in 1998 the number was 168 and in 1999, 277. What are the chances that a few of those Somalis were “related” to Atlanta Somalis and told them to ‘come on up, the public assistance is great!’
Note to readers in Maine: I have many more discoveries I want to share with you in another post, things that need further research, but this is getting too long!
The President only has one real way of reforming the US Refugee Admissions Program and that is to set the number to be admitted for FY2020 to zero and tell Congress to get the hell to workand reform the entire program or scrap it altogether.
If he sets the admissions number to zero, and sends none of our tax dollars to the federal contractors like Catholic Charities, until Congress takes up the issue, then he might actually have some serious leverage.
He should have done that in year-one of his Presidency!