PHOENIX - Authorities say eight people were arrested Thursday morning at a Phoenix business for being in the U.S. illegally.
According to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, the arrests took place at Nu Look Revinyling on Washington Street near 19th Street.
The company employs about 25 people to repair and refurbish outdoor furniture, MCSO said.
The investigation started in January when MCSO received a tip that several workers were using false identification to work there.
Deputies then raided the business Thursday after confirming the tip through a check on employment records.
"We started investigating this in January, but I know a lot of critics are going to say, 'You did this the day after 1070,' but we did an extensive investigation checking records," said Arpaio.
The sheriff was on site with his deputies as they combed through the warehouse, searching every inch, a vehicle and even the roof.
"I was in there and heard some banging and here's a lady that was hiding behind mattresses in a bin, so we're searching every area. We got another guy that was hiding in a truck," said Arpaio.
Deputies said they also found a person hiding in the rafters of the attic.
"It is desperation; it probably means they know they are guilty. It’s a sad situation, too, we have an economic problem and they're taking up jobs that people here legally could have," added Arpaio. "I understand a lot of them come here to work, but you have to do it legally."
MCSO said two of the people arrested were using the same social security number of a deceased person.
MCSO Sgt. Brandon Jones said those taken into custody and will be held on state charges of identity theft and falsifying records.
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