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Illegal workers arrested during immigration raid at Haweli Wargrave

Immigration officers arrested four Bangladeshi men during a raid at a restaurant in High Street.

The Home Office said the owners of Haweli Wargrave have a history of employing illegal workers.

On Wednesday, November 1 officers found two Bangladeshi men, both aged 27, who had overstayed their visas, a 33-year-old with no permission to work and a 37-year-old who was an illegal entrant.

A fifth 31-year-old man, also from Bangladesh, was found to have an outstanding Home Office application.

The four men arrested have been detained pending removal from the UK while the 31-year-old was ordered to report regularly to Immigration Enforcement whilst his case is progressed.

Previous raids at sister restaurant Haweli Twyford in January 2014 and August this year found nine illegal workers.

The business has been issued with fines totalling £90,000, of which £84,000 remains unpaid – which is now being actively pursued by the Home Office.

Given Haweli Twyford’s history of non-compliance, officers temporarily closed Haweli Wargrave using immigration powers, under which businesses found to be employing illegal workers can be closed for up to 48 hours – during which time an application is made to the court for a Compliance Order.

An order was granted by Reading Magistrates Court and will remain in force until November 1, 2018.

It includes requirements that the business owner must check that their employees have the right to work, and must inform Immigration Enforcement in writing before opening another business.

In future financial penalties of up to £20,000 per illegal worker found will be imposed unless the employer has proof that appropriate right-to-work document checks were carried out.

Carla Johnson, assistant director of South Central Immigration Enforcement, said: “Local businesses that persistently employ illegal workers must face the consequences.

“These immigration powers give us an opportunity to further crack down on those offenders where civil penalties have been issued and not paid.”

People with information about suspected immigration abuse can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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