By Mark Sweet, ESQ

Meg Whitman, former CEO of Ebay and current Republican Party’s nominee for the governor of California, received some interesting news yesterday.  A press conference by, who other than, Gloria Allred (who has represented Nicole Brown Simpson’s family, filed lawsuits against Tommy Lee and Michael Jackson, appeared with a former Britney Spears bodyguard, as well as Rachel Uchitel, and many others).  Allred seems to appear anytime there is a gathering of cameras and a potential lawsuit.

Allred and Diaz

Recently, she held a press conference to announce that Whitman had hired Nicky Diaz, an illegal immigrant.  Allred (a longtime Democratic supporter) claims that not only did Whitman hire an illegal immigrant, but had not paid Diaz for all of her work.  Diaz worked for Whitman for 9 years and, according to TMZ, was paid roughly $23 an hour.  Additionally, Allred claims that Diaz’s Social Security Number did not match her name, but Whitman did not care. 

Whitman Rebuttal

However, Meg Whitman has published Diaz’s application for employment.  In which she states she is from Mexico, not a U.S. Citizen, but checked the yes box to whether she could “legally accept employment.” The copies of the Social Security card state her name as well as what appears to be a legitimate social security number.  Diaz also furnished a California Driver’s license that appears to be valid. She also filled out the Employment Eligibility Verification with said Social Security number and that she attested “under penalty of perjury, that I am…” and she wrote in her Lawful Permanent Resident Alien number.  She then signed the document.  Whitman stated that after 9 years of service, Diaz confessed she was an illegal immigrant, she was promptly fired.

Hiring an Illegal Immigrant

It is illegal in pretty much every state to hire an illegal immigrant.  Please do not get this confused with people who are allowed entry into the country for purposes of work, school, or other reasons.  However, the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) applies to every employer and makes it illegal for an employer to knowingly hire an unauthorized alien or continue to employ an unauthorized alien after learning of the worker’s illegal status.

Here, there is a question as to whether Whitman “knowingly” hired an illegal immigrant.  There is no exact definition for “knowingly” but it is usually made up of three main components; either actual knowledge, constructive knowledge or imputed knowledge.  Here, Allred is arguing that Whitman should have had constructive knowledge that Diaz was illegal because of her social security number.

Do you think this a political ploy?  Should Whitman have done more research into Diaz?

In full disclosure, Gloria Allred is a fellow Alum.