A Norwich newsagents was forced to close on Tuesday (8 June) when all three members of staff were arrested UKBA officers.Officers from the UKBA local immigration team for Norfolk carried out an intelligence led visit at St Johns News in St Johns Close shortly after 1400.Immigration checks revealed that the two members of staff, plus the newspaper delivery person who had just returned from his rounds, were all in the UK illegally.The three men – a 46-year-old, a 35-year-old and a 45-year-old – were all from Sri Lanka and had overstayed their visas.A further illegal immigrant – a 27-year-old failed asylum seeker from India – was found in the accommodation above the shop.All four men were arrested and have been placed in detention while arrangements are made for their removal from the UK.St Johns News now potentially faces a fine of up to £30,000 – £10,000 per illegal worker – unless it can prove that the correct pre-employment checks were carried out.Inspector Colin Daulby, from the local immigration team Norfolk, said:’If people want to work in the UK, there are ways they can apply to come here legitimately.
‘ If they decide to ignore immigration laws, we will find them and look to remove them from the country.
‘ Anyone in Norfolk who employs a foreign national without permission to work is breaking the law and undermining law-abiding businesses. Employers have a legal responsibility to carry out the right checks.’
The civil penalty system is in operation to provide a fast and effective way of tackling bosses who fail to carry out proper checks on workers from outside Europe. A fine of up to £10,000 per worker can be imposed for every illegal worker found at a business.