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10/15/2000

Event Slams 'Illegal Aliens'

by Bart Jones
Staff Writer

A national anti-illegal immigration leader yesterday warned that the U.S. government is failing to enforce immigration laws and that an influx of "illegal aliens" is threatening the fabric of American society.

"We have an outlaw government. That's why we have outlaws standing on the street corners," Glenn Spencer, head of the Sherman Oaks, Calif.-based "Voices of Citizens Together," told about 200 people gathered at the VFW Post in Centereach.

The event was organized by the Sachem Quality of Life Organization, a local group that has denounced the presence of hundreds of Mexican day laborers in Farmingville and blames them for a range of problems in the community.

But Spencer's presence on Long Island set off alarm bells among national civil and immigrant rights groups that call his organization a "hate group" and charge that it encourages vigilantism.

The head of the Centereach VFW Post, Wayne Zack, also said he was misled by the Sachem group and never would have rented out the hall if he had known more about the groups involved.

"If we were aware of allegations that any organization was racially motivated we would not extend our facilities to them," Zack said, adding that he was inundated with angry calls from members of the post.

Spencer denied that his organization is racist, and said it is mainly concerned with stopping illegal immigration and maintaining the American way of life.

Tensions already were running high in Farmingville after two white men brutally beat two Mexican immigrants from there last month. On Tuesday, Ryan Wagner, 19, of Maspeth, Queens, surrendered to police. The second attacker is still at large.

A peace vigil to denounce the attack and call for racial harmony on Long Island is scheduled for today at 6 p.m. outside the H. Lee Dennison Building in Hauppauge.

Some of the residents at yesterday's meeting brought signs saying "Illegal Aliens are Criminals...Not Immigrants!!!!" and "Peaceful Solutions through Deportation." "We are not racists. We are not bigots. We are U.S. citizens, taxpayers," said Margaret Bianculli-Dyber, head of the Sachem group and a teacher in the New York City public school system. She announced that her group is changing its name to Long Island Quality of Life and linking up with residents in other towns.

She charged that some of the Mexican immigrants solicit sex from women on the streets of Farmingville, and that one recently hit and killed a local woman while driving drunk. A Medford man was charged in July with driving while intoxicated after a car he was driving crashed into another car and killed a 38-year-old Sayville woman.

Suffolk police say non-U.S. citizens account for less than 10 percent of arrests in Farmingville, and that crime has not risen recently in Farmingville.

Spencer said the rising number of Mexican immigrants is part of a plan by Mexico to "reconquer" the Southwest United States, which used to belong to Mexico. He said those taking part in the plan include the Mexican government, the hierarchy of the Catholic church, the Ford Foundation, corporations such as Citibank and Pacific Bell, and various immigrant rights groups.

A video put out by his group summarizes the history of Mexico partly by saying the Aztec Indians practiced human sacrifice and cannibalism.

Critics dismiss many of his allegations as paranoia, and one local immigrant rights activist criticized the Sachem group for inviting him to speak.

"Sachem, by being connected to this organization, is demonstrating that it is also racist," said Nadia Marin-Molina, head of the Hempstead-based Workplace Project, a nonprofit group that assists day laborers.