"When these audits occur, the employees scatter in the wind and go down the street and work for somebody else", Peck said. There were 1,360 inspections in fiscal year 2017. Homan promised ICE would be "firing up" worksite enforcement while he was in the Dallas area for a sheriff's convention.
ICE Deputy Director Thomas Homan, who recently told Fox News that officials in sanctuary city jurisdictions like San Francisco should face criminal charges for violating federal law, said in a statement that Wednesday's action was meant to send a message to employers.
In all, 21 workers across the country were arrested on suspicion of being in the country illegally.
Twenty-one people suspected of being in the US illegally were administratively arrested and given notices to appear in immigration court.
ICE said that raids occurred in 17 states and Washingon, D.C., and that 1,360 similar raids occurred previous year, netting 139 criminal arrests and 172 "administrative" arrests, likely for civil immigration violations.
7-Eleven, which boasts more than 60,000 stores worldwide, in a statement emailed to the Washington Post said the company is not responsible for the hiring decision of its franchise owners.
ICE would not say where the 7-Elevens were located, since it is an ongoing investigation by Homeland Security. The company stressed that it has been urging owners to comply with employment laws.More news: United States issues 'exercise increased caution' advisory for its citizens travelling to India
The agency said it was following up to a 2013 investigation in 7-Eleven stores.
Homan also revealed that there would be more such crackdowns and serious action will be taken against those violating the law.
This comes at a time of a surge in immigration arrests. Some workers may get arrested in the operations but authorities are targeting employers because they are job magnets for people to come to the country illegally.
Arrests for non-criminal immigration violations rose more than 50 percent compared to past year. "From there, we will look at whether these cases warrant an administrative posture or criminal investigation", Benner said.
"It had nothing to do with us", he said. ICE agents can serve a notice of inspection to alert businesses that officials are going to audit their hiring records to check for compliance with the law.
If employers are found not to be in compliance, it can result in civil fines and potential criminal prosecution.
Stating that the decision to kill the programme was improper, Judge William Alsup of Federal District Court in San Francisco wrote on Tuesday that the Trump administration must "maintain the DACA programme on a nationwide basis", as the legal challenge to the U.S. president's decision proceed.