Gloria Allred Says Letter Is Proof Meg Whitman Knew Housekeeper Was Illegal

Meg Whitman didn't think it was 'right thing' to turn in her illegal housekeeper

ByABC News
September 29, 2010, 3:16 PM

Sept. 30, 2010 -- Lawyer Gloria Allred released a letter today that she claims proves California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman knowingly employed an undocumented immigrant as her housekeeper.

The letter was sent from the Social Security Administration to Whitman and her husband Griffith Harsh on April 22, 2003. It advises the couple that the Social Security number of their housekeeper, Nicky Diaz, did not match their files.

The back of the letter includes a handwritten note, which Allred said was written by Harsh, that reads: "Nicky, please check this. Thanks."

Allred said that neither Whitman nor her husband followed up with Diaz about the letter and instead allowed her to continue working for the family for six more years.

Whitman has denied that she or her husband ever received a letter from the Social Security Administration alerting them to any discripancy in Diaz's status.

Griffith Harsh issued a statement today conceding he might have seen the letter, but denied it was a red flag concerning Diaz's legal status.

"While I honestly do not recall receiving this letter as it was sent to me seven years ago, I can say it is possible that I would've scratched a follow up note on a letter like this, which is a request for information to make certain Nikki received her Social Security benefits and W-2 tax refund for withheld wages," Harsh said.

"The essential fact remains the same," Harsh continued. "Neither Meg nor I believed there was a problem with Nicky's legal status and I certainly don't recall ever discussing it with my wife, nor did I ever show her any letter about it."

Allred alleged that the couple did not take any action "because they wanted to employ an undocumented worker because she was easier to exploit." She called Whitman a "liar and hypocrite" for saying that she did know about Diaz's undocumented status until the housekeeper came to the couple in June 2009 to confess and ask them for help with her immigration issue.

At her own news conference earlier today, Whitman denied that she ever received the letter and said she did not report her long-time housekeeper to immigration officials when she learned he truth because "I didn't think it was the right thing."

The former CEO of eBay and current Republican gubernatorial hopeful said did not break the law by keeping silent.

"I comported with the law and the law does not require employers to turn people in," she said.

Whitman, who appeared alongside her husband, said the letter in question never reached her desk and may have been intercepted by Diaz. "If there is a letter out there I don't know how they got it," she said. "It's not in our house."

The copy of the letter provided by Allred instructed Whitman and Harsh to look into the problem with Diaz's Social Security number and return forms with the requested information "promptly."