UK Border Agency (UKBA) officers carried out a raid on a London noodle bar last week, arresting 7 staff as part of the ongoing operation to crack down on illegal working.
Acting on intelligence, officers visited the ‘Tuk Tuk Thai Noddle Bar’ on Queensway, Bayswater, on Thursday 8 December.
They immediately arrested 5 Chinese men and 2 Malaysian women aged between 21 and 48, and discovered that 5 of them had entered the country illegally and 2 had overstayed their visas.
Six of the 7 are currently in immigration detention while ‘steps are taken’ to remove them from the country at the earliest possible opportunity.
A 34-year-old Chinese male has been released, presumably because he has no passport and his own country will not accept him back on a travel document, on condition that he regularly report to the UKBA. Considering he was here illegally at the time of his arrest there is little chance of him showing up for future removal.
The owner of the restaurant was given a penalty notice warning he could face a fine of up to £10,000 for each illegal worker arrested, unless he can prove that he had carried out the correct right-to-work checks.
Marie Babaoglu, head, north central London local immigration team, UK Border Agency said:
‘It is the legal responsibility of all businesses to check their employees have the right to work in the UK.
‘Where we find people who are in the UK illegally, we will seek to remove them. But we also want to send out a strong message to employers: more raids like this are planned.’
Every year, the UKBA impose civil penalties on thousands of companies which fail to carry out proper right-to-work checks on staff.
Employers unsure of the steps they need to take to avoid employing illegal workers can visit the preventing illegal working section of the UKBA website or they can call the UK Border Agency’s employers helpline on 0300 123 4699.
Anyone who suspects that illegal workers are being employed at a business can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Source: UKBA
Despite warnings of huge fines, employers continue to flout the law by employing non-EU and some EU workers illegally.
Employers have little excuse for employing a non-EU migrant without the correct visa, but many are unaware that some EU member citizens, Bulgarians and Romanians, also need permission to work in the UK.
When it comes to working in the UK (and many other EU countries) Bulgarian and Romanian citizens do not have the same rights as other Europeans, for instance from Poland, Slovakia or other A8 Accession countries.
Bulgarians and Romanians coming to the UK can set up a business or obtain a student Yellow Card registration permit, which allows them to study and work full time if they are taking vocational courses such as NVQ or QCF courses in Health and Social Care.
If you need any immigration advice or help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, dependant visa or an appeal against a refusal please email:
Majestic College offer special packages for EU students. They also have a number of employers looking for staff right now and are willing to employ Bulgarians and Romanians.
For more information call Joanna on 0208 207 1020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org