A Chinese takeaway in Haverhill is facing the prospect of a £60,000 fine after three workers were arrested during an operation by Immigration Enforcement Officers.
Acting on intelligence, officers visited China Garden, in Queens Square, at around 5.30pm yesterday, March 16.
When questioned to establish whether they had the right to live and work in the UK all three members of staff were found to have entered the UK illegally.
The men, aged 24, 41 and 49, were all detained pending their removal from the UK.
Immigration Officer Rob Gambrill, of Immigration Enforcement, said: “Given that nobody at the takeaway had any right to be in the UK, the men had no option but to lock the premises as they were taken away.
“On top of losing an evening’s custom, the business owners also now face the possibility of a substantial financial penalty.”
The business could be forced to pay a penalty of as much as £60,000 – up to £20,000 per illegal worker - unless it can demonstrate that appropriate right to work document checks were carried out, such as seeing a passport or Home Office document confirming permission to work in the UK.
Mr Gambrill said there was no excuse for businesses not carrying out the necessary checks.
“Employment checks are easy to carry out and those with appropriate records have nothing to fear from Immigration Enforcement,” he said.
“However, those who either knowingly employ immigration offenders or who have a lax attitude towards the legally required checks should expect a visit.”
Mr Gambrill added that he advised anyone who suspected businesses of employing illegal immigrants to notify officers.
“All of our operations are intelligence-led,” he said.
“Detailed and specific information about suspected immigration offences helps us do our job as effectively as possible and I would urge anyone with information about illegal working to get in touch.”
Anyone with information about illegal working or non-compliant employers should report this to the Home Office online at www.gov.uk/report-immigration-crime or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.