06 August 2010

UK immigration raids in Newton Abbott lead to eight arrests

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Raids by UK Border Agency officers acting on information received have discovered eight illegal workers at two businesses in Newton Abbot.

The enforcement operations on 3 August were part of planned nationwide action by the UK Border Agency to tackle illegal working, sham marriages, bogus colleges and organised UK immigration crime.

Uk Border Agency officers went to Saffron restaurant, on Queen Street, and checked the immigration status of staff.  As officers entered, two men fled from the restaurant and tried to hide in accommodation upstairs before being located.

After checks were made it was found that six men, all from Bangladesh, were working at the restaurant illegally.

Three of the men are suspected to have entered the UK illegally and two had stayed in the country after their UK Visa expired.

The sixth man was in the UK legally but was working in breach of his visa conditions.

All six were taken to Torquay police station where they remain in detention pending further questioning and steps will be taken to remove those who have no right to remain in the UK.

A civil penalty notice was handed to the business. If the employers are unable to prove that the correct pre-employment checks were carried out on the men, they face a fine of up to £10,000 per illegal worker - up to £60,000 in total.

Border Agency officers then went to Hoi Shan, also on Queen Street where a 34-year-old Chinese woman and 44-year-old Chinese man were found working illegally. They were arrested and taken to Torquay police station.

The pair were both found to be failed asylum seekers who had remained in the UK illegally after their claims for protection were turned down.

A civil penalty notice was handed to the employers who will be fined up to £20,000 unless they show that legally-required checks were carried out before giving the pair jobs.

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