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Latino Daily News

Friday December 16, 2011

Alabama Immigration Law Nabs Another Auto Executive

Alabama Immigration Law Nabs Another Auto Executive

Photo: Alabama Immigration Law Nabs Another Auto Executive

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Alabama is once again being criticized after getting another foreign-born auto executive entangled in its new immigration law, and Missouri is using the opportunity to invite the automakers to their state.

In trying to control what they believe to be an “illegal immigration problem” Alabama passed a law stating, in part, that law enforcement was to arrest anyone they legally encountered (and suspected of being in the country illegally) if they could not provide the officer with documentation proving they were in the U.S. legally.

Last month, a German Mercedes-Benz manager was arrested after a police officer pulled over the rental car he was driving because it did not have a tag. When the officer asked for the man’s driver’s license he stated he did not have one, only a German identification card. The officer then arrested the man for not carrying proper identification, as it is now required under the new law.

The 46-year-old man was charged with violating Alabama immigration law and sat in jail until an associate was able to bring his passport, visa, and German driver’s license.

Then last week, another foreign auto executive found himself the victim of that law. This time it was a Japanese executive with Honda Motor Company. According to reports, Ichiro Yada was stopped in Leeds, Alabama at a checkpoint in set up to catch unlicensed drivers.

Though he showed an international driver’s license, a valid passport, and a U.S. work permit, Yada was given a ticket. Luckily, a judge dismissed the immigration charges against Yada three days after he was booked, but not before the state’s critics took notice.

With billions of dollars being pumped back into Alabama by the automakers, them leaving could seriously affect the state’s economy, and with a Missouri news source having already sent an open letter to the foreign automakers Alabama could be in serious financial trouble.

The letter was published by the Post-Dispatch of St. Louis, and stated, “We are the Show Me State, not the Show Me Your Papers State.”