November 10, 2003 - Posted at 12:31 p.m. CDT
FREEHOLD, NJ - Wal-Mart has been sued by nine illegal immigrants who worked as janitors at Wal-Mart stores until they were arrested during federal raids last month. They accuse the company of discriminating against them. They also say the world's largest retailer and the cleaning contractors it uses have failed to pay overtime, withhold taxes and pay workers comp.
The plaintiffs were among 250 people arrested in an October 23 raid on sixty Wal-Mart stores in 21 states. Those arrested now face deportation.
The lawsuit filed Wednesday in New Jersey is the first from immigrants arrested in the raid.
Wal-Mart vice president Mona Williams says there is no evidence that Wal-Mart did anything wrong. The company has said it was not aware of the hiring practices of its outside contractors.