Models Worked for Trump and Worked Here Illegally
Highlights of this story come from Mother Jones here in part and here posted after original was posted from CNN.money on the same story (March 2016).
Donald Trump has placed immigration at the core of his presidential campaign – although his precise position and “plan” as changed a number of times.
For example: He has claimed that undocumented immigrants are “taking our jobs and taking our money.” He has to deport all of them en masse, and has vowed to build a wall on the Mexican border and have them pay for it.
At one point he demanded a ban on Muslims entering the country. Speaking to supporters in Iowa recently, he said he would crack down on visitors to the United States who overstay their visas and declared that when any American citizen “loses their job to an illegal immigrant, the rights of that American citizen have been violated.”
However, his New York modeling agency, named: “Trump Model Management” has profited from using foreign models who came to the United States on tourist visas that did not permit them to work here and they did and that according to three former Trump models, all non-citizens, who shared their stories with Mother Jones.
Financial and immigration records included in a recent lawsuit filed by a fourth former Trump model show that she, too, worked for Trump's agency in the United States without a proper visa.
Foreigners who visit the United States as tourists are generally not permitted to engage in any sort of employment unless they obtain a special visa, a process that typically entails an employer applying for approval on behalf of a prospective employee.
Employers risk fines and possible criminal charges for using undocumented labor.
Trump Model Management was founded in 1999 and according to Trump “has risen to the top of the fashion market.” On his Trump Organization's website, he boasts that the name “symbolizes success.”
According to a financial disclosure filed by his campaign in May, is shows he earned nearly $2 million from the company, in which he holds an 85 percent stake. However, some of the former Trump models say they barely made any money working for the agency because of the high fees for rent and other expenses that were charged by the Trump firm.
For example, Canadian-born Rachel Blais spent nearly three years working for Trump Model Management. After she first signed with the agency in March 2004, she said she performed a series of modeling gigs for Trump's company in the United States without a work visa.
At Mother Jones' request, Blais provided a detailed financial statement from Trump Model Management and a letter from an immigration lawyer who, in the fall of 2004, eventually secured a visa that would permit her to work legally in the United States.
These records show a six-month gap between when she began working in the United States and when she was granted a work visa. During that time, Blais appeared on Trump's hit reality TV show, The Apprentice, modeling outfits designed by his business protégé.
Trump broke the law when he allowed them to work on visitor visas and get paid any amount… or if they were not paid, yet he made money from them, it’s still a serious crime.
Now what? Stay tuned.