Skip to comments.FAA Investigating How Immigrants got Licenses
Posted on 03/27/2005 8:00:59 AM PST by tomball
The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating how five people arrested on immigration charges qualified for licensing tests for the FAA's high-level repair licenses.
FAA administrators are looking into documents used by the five in seeking the right to test for Airframe and Powerplant certification, FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said. The A&P license allows mechanics to work on the more complex parts of a plane.
"To our knowledge, they all passed the written, oral and practical tests," said Bergen, who works at the FAA's Atlanta regional office.
It's permissible for foreigners to test for an A&P license as long as they provide valid proof of training and experience, which can come from their home country and is then verified by the U.S. State Department, Bergen said.
The five were arrested two weeks ago at TIMCO, an aviation-maintenance company at Piedmont-Triad International Airport.
Dave Latimer, a TIMCO vice president, said all the work performed by those arrested was double checked by FAA-licensed supervisors who weren't illegal immigrants and, often, by additional quality-control inspectors.
Federal agents detained 27 workers at TIMCO, 24 of whom are charged with being in the United States illegally. Most came from labor contractors who provide TIMCO with temporary workers. TIMCO was not implicated, agents said.
Meanwhile, an official with one of TIMCO's labor contractors had a hearing Wednesday on criminal charges stemming from the arrests and was denied bail. Jorge Ruiz-Alonso, 60, a Venezuelan, is accused of helping an illegal immigrant get work at TIMCO using fake green and Social Security cards.
Ruiz-Alonso, himself accused of being an illegal immigrant, worked five years for Structural Modification and Repair Technicians, or S.M.A.R.T., a labor contractor that put four of those charged as illegal immigrants at TIMCO.
I would loved to have sat in on those "ORAL" exams. In what language were they given and by whom?
Why isn't the justice department, homeland security and immigration investigating and prosecuting those responsible? It's hard to believe that we have an administration that is willing to allow this country to be destroyed by a policy of "open borders" even to the extent of ignoring the law. Unfortunately it's becoming more believable with every action or inaction on their part.
Contractor for TIMCO charged
By Taft Wireback Staff Writer
News & Record
GREENSBORO -- Federal agents have charged an official with one of TIMCO's labor contractors with providing false documents to an illegal immigrant so the foreigner could get a job at the huge aviation-maintenance company in western Greensboro.
The charges against Jorge Ruiz-Alonso, 60, of 7104 W. Friendly Ave., are the first hint that authorities might go beyond the arrests of 24 people believed to be illegal immigrants who were detained at TIMCO two weeks ago by holding accountable the companies that hired them.
Ruiz-Alonso was among the 24 detainees taken into custody in the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement sting at TIMCO on March 8. He is a Venezuelan who came into the United States for a one-year stay in 1993 and never left, according to the charges against him.
Like the other detainees, he faces deportation proceedings in addition to his criminal charges, which also include the illegal purchase of a 12-gauge shotgun.
But unlike many of the others charged, who were aircraft mechanics at TIMCO, Ruiz-Alonso, also known as Jorge Ruiz, was a coordinator with S.M.A.R.T. aviation company of Edgewater, Fla. His job involved finding temporary workers for the huge aviation-maintenance company at Piedmont Triad International Airport, which repairs and maintainsplanes for such companies as United Airlines.
Federal immigration agent D. Brent Perley said in a criminal complaint against Ruiz-Alonso that federal agents "received information from a cooperating citizen believed to be reliable" that the S.M.A.R.T. official hired the informant in October 2000, knowing that the informant was an illegal immigrant.
Ruiz-Alonso also gave the informant a counterfeit immigration document and a fake Social Security card so that the illegal immigrant could complete the federal government's I-9 form, which verifies a new hire's legal standing to work in this country, the complaint alleges.
Perley said in the criminal complaint that on March 8, immigration agents searched both Ruiz-Alonso's home and his S.M.A.R.T. office at the TIMCO complex.
"Your affiant located a copy of said fraudulent alien registration receipt card, A208115378, within the file records of S.M.A.R.T.," Perley said in the complaint.
Efforts to reach S.M.A.R.T. officials in Florida for comment were unsuccessful Saturday afternoon. On March 9, a company spokeswoman declined to comment on the federal enforcement action at TIMCO.
The firearms charge against Ruiz-Alonso stems from a law that bars illegal immigrants from buying guns in the United States. But according to the criminal complaint, Ruiz-Alonso filled out a federal firearms form at the Wal-Mart Superstore on West Wendover Avenue on May 10, claiming to be a citizen of "Puerto Rico/USA" and writing "no" on the line that asked whether the purchaser was "an alien illegally in the United States?"
Contact Taft Wireback at 373-7100 or email@example.com
In other words, they don't have a clue as to whether or not these illegals passed the tests.
I couldn't help but notice your tagline. I was skewered by some Wal-Mart shoppers on another thread as being against "free trade" and a "protectionist" for expressing the same sentiment. They just can't correlate the trade imbalance the USA has with China to the problem of illegal, un-controlled, immigration. Mexicans are coming North, but darn few Americans are going South, and they had better not be looking for a job if they do. As well, Chinese imports are crossing the Pacific like Mexicans crossing the Rio Grand, but US made goods are not going the other way to China (unless it's military electronics by Loral). Wal-Mart, and other retailers that cater to the; "lowest-price-no-matter-the-cost crowd", are nothing more than trade "Coyotes" and the USA will suffer because of it.
Select your translator. Repeated in 41 languages.
What does the gear do? Where is it located?
Who flies the airplane? Where do the sit when flying the airplane?
What is the starboard wing. Which side of the aircraft is it located on?
What is the vertical tail assembly. What does it consist of?
Where are the airplane engines located? The main aircraft engines, yes. How many engines are on the plane in this picture?
How many tires does the airplane have. Yes, the one in the picture.
What is the purpose of a freight aircraft? Why doesn't it have any seats for passengers?
Congratulations! This is the 1st time an entire class has passed this test.
Yes. Why are not the authorities pulling out all stops on doing the job we pay them for?
Especially if the coffee is imported from China and purchased at Wal-Mart.
Sounds like jobs Americans won't take to me.
If an investigation was done on all of the Representatives in Washington D.C. and other high level people plus those in the U.N. I think there would be more than half of them employ illegal aliens to work for them in and around their homes or other businesses they have and they know that the ones they employ are here illegally and don't really care.
IT'S ALSO HARD TO BELIEVE that it is taxing the airline industry to death! My airline, Continental, was one of a few that was profitible BEFORE Sept 11th. But for the new aviation fees IMPOSED by our government, we would be one of three profitable cariers today. In 2004 we lost just over $200 million after paying over 1 Billion if new fees! Now the employees have to take paycuts to make ends meet. My tax dollars at work!
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They are not bloody "immigrants!"
Immigration is legal and millions of immigrants hold all kinds of licences including medical practitioners' and pharmacists and pilots and airplane mechanics' licences.
These folks are illegal MIGRANTS and/or illegal and/or criminal ALIENS -- not "immigrants!"
I would surely have loved to seen what(and how) they would have answered those questions...espanol & peso I would presume. I can't believe corporations go to such extremes (even to prison), to get cheap labor just to save having to pay good wages to those who have earned it. All in the name of corporate profits. All at the expense of safety and National Security. National Security...what National Security???
"I would loved to have sat in on those "ORAL" exams. In what language were they given and by whom?"
Me too. I worked my butt off to get my A&P ticket and this story really ticks me off.
Obviously, we don't pay them enough.
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