Bus holding immigrants facing criminal charges caught in Postville raid Monday

I was driving to pick up a mugshot of a man accused of sexual abuse from the Linn County Sheriff’s Office when I realized I had pulled up next to this huge Department of Homeland Security bus. Only one thing could be inside — immigrants arrested during the raid at Agriprocessors, Inc., meatpacking plant in Postalville. People stopped to gawk when it pulled up to the entrance of the jail, including me because I had to take a picture. “You don’t see that everyday!” the woman next to me exclaimed.

No, you really don’t.

Apparently the Linn County Jail is scheduled to hold 90 of the 154 people facing criminal charges so far. The jail’s capacity is 409, but they are already holding 383 after the first 48 immigrants. But Sheriff Don Zeller didn’t seem worried about that when I talked to him Wednesday night.

“We’re aware that we may have to handle a large number of (the immigrants), and we’re making arrangements for that,” he told me, but he wouldn’t tell me what those arrangements may be. Two to a bed? Rotating bunk wheels? I’m not quite sure what will happen, but Zeller’s a resourceful guy.

Maybe he could make some room for top members of Agriprocessors management, too…oh wait, they might not even face any charges for knowingly employing and exploiting illegal immigrants, charging below minimum wage, etc. I forgot. Their “cooperation” during the raid was SO helpful. **looking the other way**