The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

June 14, 2013

Missouri man pleads guilty to foreign labor violations


From The Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A Branson man who did business arranging employment contracts for workers has pleaded guilty to violating federal laws on foreign labor.

The U.S. Attorney’s office says 39-year-old Steven Howard Teel entered the pleas Thursday to harboring aliens and making false statements.

Prosecutors said Teel admitted arranging for 78 people from other countries to enter the U.S. in 2009 under a temporary worker visa program. The workers were supposed to be placed with companies in the South Carolina resort of Myrtle Beach.

Instead, Teel admitted putting them in jobs in Branson to satisfy contracts he had with employers there. But the federal government had not yet approved the temporary worker visa program for the Branson area.

Teel was paid about $124,000 by Branson employers for providing the workers.