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A closer look at the Hastings meat packing plant death
Target 5 Investigation
News 5 continues with our Target 5 investigation as we look into the handling of an employee's fatal accident at the Nebraska prime meatpacking plant in Hastings.
We've learned that Adalid Nava-Arcos may have been an undocumented worker with a number of different aliases.
Tonight, we hear from a former employee from a different meatpacking plant. She says at those locations there were safety issues and problems with legal identification for the employees.
News 5 has told you about the worker who was injured at the plant in January and later died. Identifying Arcos took weeks because of improper documents. It's a trend one former worker in the same field says is all too common.
"It's cheap labor, but it's not really cheap. It's soulfully wrong," said Terri.
Terri worked at a meat packing plant in Lexington, Nebraska and one in Pasco, Washington until 1996:
"I worked in packaging and I worked briefly in slaughter."
News 5 has learned that Arcos had many aliases and may have been an undocumented worker which Terri says is not uncommon.
"If people are here undocumented they use aliases. It's commonly known. I have been in the office of the place I worked in Lexington where they said well, we've got to get so-and-so a new number."
Meaning a new social security number. And she says it becomes a domino effect.
"So what you're eating can be affected. It could be contaminated and it could be ignored. If they're going to ignore federal laws, what else are they going to ignore? And we have a person that's died for their lack of responsibility."
News 5 contacted Nebraska Prime Thursday and spoke with the general manager of the Hastings Plant John Perkins.
News 5: "I just wanted to ask you a couple questions regarding the OSHA fines?"
Perkins: "All I can tell you Katie is that the company stance on this is we have no comment at this time."
News 5: "Do you have a comment on the accident that occurred back in January?"
Perkins: "I have no comment at this time."
"If you watch in communities where there are packing houses you will see the news cover and then nothing more happens. Somebody's missing or somebody's found dead and then nothing really comes of it," Terri said.
And Terri says it's not just about the workers:
"If you don't care about the people what about the meat that you're consuming."
News 5 has also contacted ICE who says they are looking into the matter but have no comment at this time.
Nebraska Prime, the meat packing plant in Hastings was formerly known as the Premium Protein plant and was bought in auction back in 2010 by Hastings Acquisitions LLC.
Hastings Acquisitions LLC is a partnership between two owners, one from Chicago and an Orthodox Jewish family from New York.
The Hastings plant is used as a slaughterhouse and processing plant for various meats including kosher meats.
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