Business faces fine for workers in breach of UK visas

15 Nov 2011 | Posted by Carl Thomas

A restaurant business in Dereham is facing a substantial fine for employing people in breach of their UK visas.

Located in the town's Market Place, the Akash Tandoori was found by UK Border Agency (UKBA) officials to have hired three Bangladeshi men whose UK immigration status did not permit them to be working.

The three men, two aged two and one aged 21, were arrested after checks confirmed they were employed in breach of their student visas. They have since been taken to an immigration detention centre pending removal from the country.

Meanwhile, the Akash Tandoori could be charged a fine of up to £30,000 - £10,000 for each worker – unless the establishment is able to prove that it conducted the correct pre-employment checks on the staff.

Philip Hallwood, immigration officer for the UKBA in Norfolk, commented on the situation: “Businesses that exploit illegal workers face severe financial penalties and potential prosecution.

"We are happy to help businesses carry out the correct pre-employment checks. But those intent on breaking the law should expect an enforcement visit.”

Immigration officials tend to come down hard on businesses that have flaunted the right-to-work checks and regulations regarding the hiring of overseas staff. But there is support available for those who want it and the checks, which tend to involve checking passports and UK work permits, do not need to be a major barrier to business.