CARTERSVILLE, Ga. (FOX 5 Atlanta) - A Bartow County man faces federal charges after an indictment accuses him of hiring and underpaying undocumented immigrants.
Federal and local law authorities announced the indictment of Juan Perez at a Thursday morning news conference outside of the Bartow County Sheriff’s Office in Carterville.
Prosecutors said Perez came to the U.S. illegally but he has lived a lavish lifestyle while in this country.
Authorities showed images of some of the items seized from Perez’s home in Bartow County including trucks, custom cars, and an RV.
Investigators said their raid of his home last week also netted more than a dozen guns.
Officers with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Homeland Security, Bartow County Sheriff’s Office and other agencies have reportedly investigated Perez for 5 years.
U.S. Attorney BJ Pak said while Perez moved to Bartow County 1992, the undocumented immigrant opened a business, Aztec Framing, in 2009.
At that business, Perez allegedly hired other people in the country illegally and underpaid them.
Pak told reporters, “Mr. Perez and his subcontractors not only employed illegal aliens substantially below low market rates they also did not provide any benefits or insurance, paid no payroll taxes, or social security taxes at all."
Investigators said Perez also owned property in Catoosa and Floyd Counties as well as Tennessee.
The utilities at those homes were allegedly put in the names of other people, so prosecutors said other people could face charges.