Immigration officials deny 'large scale' presence in Kona

Updated: Mar. 29, 2017 at 5:05 AM HST
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KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii (AP) - The president of the Kona Coffee Farmers Association says she has taken steps to ensure the group's members are aware of their rights as farmers and immigrant laborers after receiving reports of activity in the area by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

West Hawaii Today reports that the association sent out an email to its members on March 7 detailing immigrants' rights as laborers as applied to dealings with ICE officers. Association President Suzanne Shriner says the message was sent following reports that agents entered at least three Kona farms to conduct inquiries or operations.

She says she's unaware if anyone was seized by agents during the visits.

ICE spokeswoman Virginia Kice says in a statement reports of the agency's visits have either been exaggerated or are completely false.

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