Employers have been encouraged to carry out their legal duty and perform UK immigration checks on their staff following the discovery of five illegal workers in Basildon.
The group, who were all Bangladeshi men, were found to be working at the Moza Indian Buffet restaurant in the town's festival leisure park. UK immigration officials raided the establishment and discovered performed checks on the backgrounds of the suspects.
It was revealed that two offenders had overstayed their UK visas, a further two were in breach of their UK visas, while the fifth had entered the country illegally in the first place.
Chris Evans, chief immigration officer for the UK Border Agency, reminded businesses of their duties regarding overseas workers: “We are happy to provide guidance to businesses on the laws around migrant labour and preventing the hiring of illegal workers.
“Employers have a legal duty to ensure all their staff are entitled to work in the UK. Where businesses refuse to play by the rules, they can expect to get caught and to get punished.”
The restaurant now faces fines of up to £50,000 for each illegal worker unless it is able to provide that the correct pre-employment right-to-work checks were conducted. Meanwhile, officials are working to remove the five offenders from the country.