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10 November 2011, 14:23
Three immigration offenders have been arrested following a UK Border Agency raid at a Herne Bay takeaway.
Acting on information received officers from the agency went to Flames Kebabs, High Street on 9 November.
When officers entered the premises one man attempted to flee from the rear of the building. He was caught by officers and checks revealed he was a 20 year-old failed asylum seeker from Afghanistan.
After checking the immigration status of the other staff officers found a further two men, aged 18 and 20 from Turkey, working illegally. One was a failed asylum seeker and the other had overstayed his visit visa.
All three were arrested and are in immigration detention while the UK Border Agency takes steps to remove them from the UK.
Flames Kebabs now faces a potential fine of up to £30,000 for the three men found working illegally. If employers cannot prove that the correct right-to-work checks – such as asking for a passport or work permit – were carried out before taking on staff, they face fines of up to £10,000 per illegal worker.
Karyn Dunning, who heads the UK Border Agency’s local immigration team for Kent said:
“The message is clear for employers — we will not tolerate illegal working. It is a crime that not only undercuts local business but also has a serious impact on communities, taking jobs from those who are genuinely allowed to work.
“It is the legal responsibility of all employers to check that staff have the right to work in the UK. There are simple ways of checking a foreign national's right to work and there are no excuses for failing to do so.”
Every year, the UK Border Agency imposes civil penalties on thousands of companies which fail to carry out the necessary right-to-work checks on their staff.
Employers unsure of the steps they need to take to avoid employing illegal workers can visit www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/advice-for-employers 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 in Kent can contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 anonymously or visit www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/report-immigration-crime.