MERRIAM, Kan. — Seaboard Foods LLC and Seaboard Foods, subsidiaries of Seaboard Corp., agreed to pay $1,006,000 to settle an investigation into its hiring and employment practices and alleged errors in in I-9 paperwork related to employees at its pork processing plant in Guymon, Oklahoma. The civil settlement agreement with the US Dept. of Homeland Securities, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Oklahoma’s Office of the Attorney General concluded the investigation that was focused on the period between 2007 and 2012. Seaboard states the settlement also ends an investigation focused on the coverage of healthcare claims by individuals enrolled in private health insurance provided by Seaboard. There were no criminal charges filed on the company.
In a statement, Seaboard denied the validity of the allegations and stated its full cooperation with the government’s investigation.
“The settlement acknowledges that Seaboard denies each and every allegation of wrongdoing and explicitly reflects that the settlement is not an admission of liability by Seaboard,” the company said in allegations that it hired workers who were in the US illegally at an Oklahoma pork plant.
Seaboard Foods President and CEO Darwin Sand said he is pleased to have the matter resolved and looks forward to moving ahead as the investigation has lasted more than five years and has been costly and time consuming.
“Our company demands adherence to all laws, rules and regulations everywhere we operate, and we take our compliance obligations seriously,” Sand said. “In the settlement agreement, ICE and the State of Oklahoma acknowledged that Seaboard employed company-wide compliance efforts, both prior to and subsequent to the investigation.”