Texas firm to pay $275K for illegal Shale workers

    A Texas company doing survey work on the Marcellus Shale will forfeit $250,000 after admitting it illegally transported and housed 19 foreign workers.

    The Williamsport Sun-Gazette reports that GPX/GPX USA pleaded guilty Friday to housing and transporting illegal laborers from Mexico to help perform oil and gas mapping surveys.

    The Sealy, Texas, company has agreed to forfeit $250,000 and pay more than $25,000 in fines after its plea Friday. The formal sentencing is set for Thursday in federal court in Harrisburg.

    Lawyer Steve Britt of Blue Bell says Saturday that company owner Michael Ellis runs a small business that didn’t properly check the workers’ backgrounds. A foreman has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor.

    The May 2012 indictment says the workers lived at three Williamsport apartments.

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