16 suspected illegal workers and 4 suspected employers arrested in a four-day ImmD anti-illegal worker  operations

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The Immigration Department mounted a series of territory-wide anti-illegal worker operations codenamed "Greenlane", "Lightshadow", "Twilight" and a joint operation with the Hong Kong Police Force codenamed "Champion" for four consecutive days from June 13 to yesterday (June 16). Photo shows a suspected illegal worker arrested during an operation.

From June 13 to June 16, the Immigration Department mounted a series of territory-wide anti-illegal worker operations.

The ImmD operation used codenamed, “Greenlane”, “Lightshadow”, Twilight”, and “Champion”. A total of 16 suspected illegal workers and six suspected employers were arrested.

During the anti-illegal worker operations, ImmD Task Force officers raided 59 target locations including a clinic, food and beverage areas, hotels, residential buildings, restaurants, retail shops, and a wet market. Two suspected illegal workers and two suspected employers were arrested. The arrested suspected illegal workers comprised two women, aged 33 and 54. Among them, one woman was a holder of a recognizance form, which prohibits her from taking any employment. Furthermore, two men, both aged 32, were suspected of employing the illegal workers and were also arrested.

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The ImmD spokesperson explained again that “Any person who contravenes a condition of stay in force in respect of him or her shall be guilty of an offense. Also, visitors are not allowed to take employment in Hong Kong, whether paid or unpaid, without the permission of the Director of Immigration. Offenders are liable to prosecution and upon conviction face a maximum fine of $50,000 and up to two years’ imprisonment. Aiders and abettors are also liable to prosecution and penalties.”

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The Spokesperson repeatedly gives warning that it is a serious offense to employ people who are not lawfully employable. Under the Immigration Ordinance, the maximum penalty for an employer employing a person who is not lawfully employable, i.e. an illegal immigrant, a person who is the subject of a removal order or a deportation order, an overstayer, or a person who was refused permission to land, has been significantly increased from a fine of $350,000 and three years’ imprisonment to a fine of $500,000 and 10 years imprisonment to reflect the gravity of such offenses. The director, manager, secretary, partner, etc, of the company concerned, may also bear criminal liability. The High Court has laid down sentencing guidelines that the employer of an illegal worker should be given an immediate custodial sentence.