Jury convicts construction foreman of transporting and harboring illegal aliens
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) - United states attorney Matt M. Dummermuth announced today that a construction foreman from South Dakota who hired illegal aliens was convicted by a jury on December 4, 2008, after a four-day trial in federal court in Sioux City.
Donald Robert Stangeland, age 55, from Flandreau, South Dakota, was convicted of one count of transporting an illegal alien from mexico and two counts of harboring an illegal alien from Mexico. Stangeland was acquitted on one count of transporting an illegal alien and one count of harboring an illegal alien. The verdicts were returned the afternoon of December 4, 2008, following about 10 hours of jury deliberations.
The evidence at trial showed Stangeland was a foreman for a steel construction firm in Flandreau, South Dakota. In the spring of 2007, Stangeland hired workers to build steel grain bins in Iowa, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Minnesota. When Stangeland hired them, he knew, or recklessly disregarded the fact, that some of the workers had entered or remained in the United States unlawfully. Stangeland did not ask some of the workers to fill out a required I-9 form for employment identification and work eligibility. Stangeland did not ask for any form of valid identification or proof of work eligibility from some of the workers. Some of the workers had entered the United States illegally from Mexico and remained in the United States illegally.
Sentencing before United States District Court Judge Linda R. Reade will be set after a presentence report is prepared. Stangeland remains free on bond previously set pending sentencing. Stangeland faces a possible maximum sentence of 10 years' imprisonment, a $750,000 fine, $300 in special assessments, and up to 3 years of supervised release following any imprisonment.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kevin C. Fletcher and was investigated by immigration and customs enforcement, the Iowa State Patrol, the Monona County Sheriffs's Office, and the Monona and Woodbury County Attorneys' Offices.