Three Malaysian people living in Northern ireland without a visa in place have been removed from the country after a Lisburn restaurant was raided by immigration officers.
The Red Wok restaurant on Governor’s Road, Lisburn, was raided today (Friday) where the two women, aged 25 and 47, and a 21-year-old Malaysian man were arrested for having overstayed their visas. All three have now been removed from the country.
The arrests were made as part of a province-wide operation with further arrests made in Newry and Belfast.
The Red Wok has now been served with a penalty notice for employing illegal workers. To avoid fines of up to £10,000 per employee evidence must be provided that the correct pre-employment checks were made on the workers – such as seeing a passport or Home Office document.
Those arrested in Belfast are being held in Home Office detention in Larne House, Larne while steps are taken to also remove them from the country.
Mike Golden for the Home Office, said: “Foreign nationals who are in this country illegally should be in no doubt that they will be caught, arrested and removed from the UK.
“We are determined to crack down on immigration offenders and anyone found living or working here illegally is liable to be detained and removed.”
Every year, the Home Office imposes civil penalties on hundreds of companies which fail to carry out legally-required checks on their staff.
The Home Office provides support to employers so they can understand the rules, including visits by staff, a dedicated telephone helpline and website.
Employers unsure of the steps they need to take to avoid employing illegal workers can visit http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/business-sponsors/preventing-illegal-working/ or they can call the Employers Helpline on 0300 123 4699.
Anyone who suspects that illegal workers are being employed at a business or someone is living in the UK illegally can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.