Following investigations by The Insolvency Service, the directors of 11 different companies across the UK have been disqualified after employing illegal workers.
The businesses include four restaurants, three butchers, a café, a clothing manufacturer and a petrol station.
The 11 directors have each been banned from being company directors, or being involved in the management of companies, for six years.
They all failed to ensure that their companies complied with statutory obligations under the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 to ensure that relevant immigration checks were completed and copy documents retained.
Following visits from Home Office Immigration, during which the breaches were discovered, the companies were issued with penalty notices ranging from £10,000 to £15,000 per worker, which remain unpaid, and three of the companies have now entered into liquidation.
The Insolvency Service is working very closely with Home Office Immigration Enforcement to take action in cases where the company is still active and not subject to insolvency proceedings.
Cheryl Lambert, Chief Investigator at the Insolvency Service, said: “Employing illegal workers is not a victimless crime. These directors sought an unfair advantage over their competitors by employing people under the radar who were not entitled to work legally in the UK.
If a company is found to be employing illegal workers and not carrying out the checks they are required to by law, then the Insolvency Service will take action to remove the directors from the market place, regardless of whether the company is in liquidation or not.
This action is a warning to other employers to seriously consider their duties and obligations.”
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