Four men arrested by immigration officers at restaurant

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Four men have been arrested in Ashington after immigration officers questioned them about their right to live and work in the UK.

Acting on intelligence, officers visited Indian Cottage, an Indian restaurant in London Road, Ashington, on Thursday, August 25.

Staff were questioned to establish whether they had the right to live and work in the UK.

Officers arrested four men aged between 26 and 36 years old, all from Bangladesh.

A spokesperson for the Home Office said two of the men had overstayed their student visas, another had overstayed his work visa and the fourth man had entered the UK illegally.

Three remain in immigration detention pending their removal from the UK. The remaining man has been given immigration bail and must now report regularly to the Home Office while his case is considered.

Inspector Ceri Williams, of the Kent and Sussex Immigration Enforcement team, said:

“We are working hard to tackle illegal working and those who abuse the UK’s immigration system.

“Using illegal labour is not victimless crime. It defrauds the Treasury, depriving vital public services like schools and hospitals of funds, it undercuts honest businesses and it cheats legitimate job seekers of employment opportunities.

“It also exploits some of society’s most vulnerable people.”

The business has been served with a notice warning that a financial penalty of up to £20,000 for each illegal worker found will be imposed unless they 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.

Since four people were arrested the fine could be as high as £80,000

People with information about suspected immigration abuse can contact https://www.gov.uk/report-immigration-crime or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.