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United States Attorney Joe Kelly announced that James R. Barger, Jr., 49, was sentenced today in federal court in Omaha for harboring illegal aliens for commercial advantage and private financial gain. United States District Judge Robert F. Rossiter, Jr., expressing concerns about COVID-19 in the jails, sentenced Barger to two years’ supervised release and required Barger to perform 80 hours of community service per year. Barger will also pay a money forfeiture judgment in the amount of $150,000.

Barger is the principal owner of J.R. Barger & Sons, Inc., an Omaha-based commercial concrete company. In April 2018, federal agents visited various J.R. Barger & Sons worksites and identified 27 field employees of the company who were in the United States illegally. Agents determined that several of the employees were employed under falsified identification documents and Barger was aware of the illegal status of at least some of his employees and had permitted employees to change identification documents during the course of their employment. Barger also permitted undocumented workers to purchase used company vehicles in order to further facilitate their employment at J.R. Barger & Sons.

“Protecting the integrity of the U.S. immigration system is a key component of our homeland security mission,” said Katherine Greer, Special Agent in Charge of HSI Kansas City. “Enforcing immigration and hiring laws helps protect jobs for U.S. citizens and lawful residents.”

This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations with assistance from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.