Officers from the Australian Border Force detained eight non-citizens including two Nepalis following the execution of migration-related warrants on two properties at Kununurra.
Six Malaysian nationals and two from Nepal were detained and taken to the Kununurra police station for interview.
Acting Superintendent Anthony Spadavecchia from the ABF’s Enforcement Command said three of those detained were suspected of higher level involvement in worker exploitation and were being held in detention ahead of their removal from Australia.
“The remaining five individuals were conditionally released, contingent on their immediate departure from Australia,” he said “This operation specifically targeted labour hire intermediaries and employers suspected of exploiting foreign workers.
“Illegal workers are often underpaid and poorly treated, and those facilitating their employment are making significant profits at their expense. It also puts legitimate local businesses at a disadvantage.”
According to news item published in WA Topday,in cases of organised visa fraud, the ABF could pursue offences carrying penalties up to 10 years imprisonment and/or fines of up to $210,000 for individuals and $1,050,000 for corporations. Investigations into illegal labour hire in the region are continuing.
Anyone who is aware of an individual, business or employer who might be facilitating visa fraud or illegal work is urged to contact Border Watch.