Rubashkin child labor law trial underway in Waterloo - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Rubashkin child labor law trial underway in Waterloo

by Danielle Wagner

WATERLOO (KWWL) Sholom Rubashkin is back in court. This time he's in Waterloo facing state child labor law violations.

He faces 83 charges, stemming from the alleged employment of dozens of under-age workers.

During opening statements Monday, the State of Iowa said workers under age 18 were subject to dangerous conditions and long hours. The state claims Rubashkin was "willfully blind" to children working in Agriprocessors.

The defense said Rubashkin never hired a child and had no first-hand knowledge of people younger than 18 working at the plant, nor would he want young people working there, especially since he says he knew ahead of time about the raid.

The state called two witnesses Monday. Both were illegal immigrants who worked at Agriprocessors in Postville.

They testified to being younger than 18 when working at Agriprocessors, working at least 10 to 12 hours at the plant six days a week and working with dangerous materials.

The defense said the workers lied and forged documents voluntarily because they wanted to get jobs at Agriprocessors.

The trial resumes Tuesday at 9 a.m.

Reporter: Danielle Wagner

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