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Press Release

Delaware County Dairy Cattle Farmer Pleads Guilty to Illegal Alien Harboring

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa

A Delaware County, Iowa, man pled guilty today in federal court in Cedar Rapids to one count of harboring, encouraging, and inducing an alien to reside in the United States in violation of law, for the purpose of commercial advantage or personal financial gain.

Michael Thomas Millenkamp, 47, of rural Earlville, Iowa, was convicted of one count of harboring, encouraging, and inducing an alien to reside unlawfully in the United States.

In a plea agreement filed at the time of the plea hearing, Millenkamp admitted that between 2007 and 2011, he employed several illegal aliens at his business, Mike Millenkamp Dairy Cattle, near Earlville.  Some of the illegal alien employees were permitted to reside at one or more farms owned by Millenkamp.  Millenkamp admitted he told one illegal alien:

“these people I know, they’re my friends, and they’re like, Mike why are you hiring people that are illegal?  Why are you hiring people illegal Mike?  I said, I don’t know.  But I knew I had to lie, I had to lie.”

As part of the plea agreement, Millenkamp is required to engage in ongoing compliance with the employment eligibility verification laws, and to obtain a certification that his animal feeding operations are in compliance with Iowa’s water quality standards.  If the environmental assessment indicates deficiencies in Millenkamp’s operations, Millenkamp will be required to remediate those problems.

Millenkamp also agreed as part of his plea agreement to pay a total financial sanction of $250,000 to the United States, and to make at least two public presentations to statewide farm groups to bring awareness to his case.

Sentencing before United States District Court Chief Judge Linda R. Reade will be set after a presentence report is prepared.  Millenkamp was released on bond pending sentencing.  Millenkamp faces a possible maximum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, a $100 in special assessment, and 3 years of supervised release following any imprisonment.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Richard L. Murphy and was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations.

Court file information is available at  The case file number is 15-CR-02031-LRR.

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Updated August 7, 2015