UK Immigration Raids: Officers Arrest Suspected Illegal Workers

In immigration raids  across North East England today, the Home Office immigration team has conducted raids on takeaways and have arrested and detained suspected illegal workers. Immigration raids by the Home Office are beginning to become more common in recent news as reports reveal that the Home Office have taken a harsh stance towards those suspected of living and working illegally in the UK.

The Home Office are also toughening up on UK business owners who are employing migrants from outside the EEA and intend to toughen civil penalties for businesses employing illegal migrants once the Immigration Bill becomes law.

UK Takeaways Raided for Suspected Illegal Workers

The Home Office’s immigration enforcement team visited premises across the North East as they targeted illegal workers in Newcastle and Northumberland. The following are the results of the co-ordinated operation by the immigration enforcement team:

  • Four Bangladeshi men were arrested at Ashiana, Front Street; three of the men were in the UK illegally and the fourth had no permission to work in the UK;
  • A 35 year old man from China was found to be working illegally at China Village, The Square, and was arrested;
  • Two Bangladeshi men aged 18 and 33 were arrested after checks revealed they were in the UK illegally; and
  • Two Bangladeshi mean aged 35 and 47 were also arrested for being in the UK illegally at Bombay Nights.

Those who were arrested are now being detained and face being deported out of the UK.

UK Businesses Fined for Employing Illegal Workers

The business owners who were found to be employing the suspected illegal workers, now face fines of up to £10,000 for each illegal worker and/or face criminal prosecution if it transpires that they failed to carry out the appropriate checks on their employees. Ashiana faces a fine of up to £40,000, £10,000 for China Village, £20,000 for Shiraz and £20,000 for Bombay Nights.

The government intends to toughen civil penalties for businesses employing illegal migrants once the Immigration Bill becomes law. The following is a summary of these proposals:

  • The maximum penalty for employing illegal workers will increase to £20,000;
  • The way civil penalties are calculated will be simplified;
  • The way unpaid penalties can be enforced in the civil courts will be simplified; and
  • There will be measures to allow recovery of a civil penalty from directors and partners of limited liability businesses following failure to pay by the businesses.

Immigration Legal Advice for UK Employers & Illegal Workers

If you are a UK business and have been affected by the Home Office’s raids, contact us to discuss this further. Business owners sponsoring migrants from outside the EEA must ensure that they are legally registered to sponsor these migrants and must have a valid Tier 2 Sponsorship Licence. If the Home Office has contacted you in relation to carrying out a compliance visit at your business premises, contact us for legal advice.

Illegal migrants with strong Human Rights arguments ought to take legal advice and regularise their stay in the UK as soon as possible and before it is too late. Contact us to discuss your immigration situation and we will assess your case and provide you with options of regularising your stay.

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