A Northport businessman pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiracy to conceal and harbor undocumented immigrants by employing them at his store.
Yong Min Choe, 55, faces up to 10 years in prison when he is sentenced in September. He also faces a fine of up to twice the value of the gross gain and will forfeit more than $1.3 million in assets.
Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New
York, said that in March 2004, Choe began operating the 7-Eleven store and, as part of the
franchise agreement, agreed to abide by state and local labor laws. Between 2004 and November
2019, Choe hired individuals who did not have authorization to work in the United States and
allowed those employees to use false Social Security numbers and other personal identifying
information. As a result, Choe was able to pay his employees sub-standard wages and enrich
“The defendant conveniently used his convenience store to harbor and exploit
alien employees and steal wages,” Donoghue said. “This office,
together with our law enforcement partners, is committed to vigorously enforcing immigration
and labor laws that protect our borders as well as the workplace.”