Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Home detention in unlawful migrant case

Media release

31 January 2013


Home detention in unlawful migrant case

The sentencing of a contractor in the horticulture industry for hiring unlawful migrant workers who were all paid below the minimum wage sends a strong message to employers who may contemplate employing migrants who are not entitled to work in New Zealand.

Bun Thuon Lam, a Vietnamese national with New Zealand residence, pleaded guilty to five charges under the Immigration Act relating to aiding and abetting people to remain in New Zealand unlawfully or to breach a condition of their visa. He has been sentenced at Nelson District Court to nine months’ home detention and 200 hours community work and ordered to pay reparation of $10,000, to be divided between the six workers involved.

The court heard that Lam employed the six in the horticulture industry in the Tasman region knowing they were unlawfully in New Zealand. The workers were not paid the minimum wage for the hours they had worked, were not paid regularly and were not paid any holiday pay. None of the workers had employment contracts and no wage or time records were kept.

A Labour Inspector analysis of the hours worked by the workers estimated they were underpaid between $5,000 and $7,000 each.

The Labour Inspectorate had previously taken Lam to the Employment Relations Authority (ERA). In May 2011 the ERA ordered Lam to pay five of the workers a total of $36,938.16 in respect of unpaid wages, minimum wage arrears, public holiday pay, failing to provide individual employment agreements and making deductions from pay without obtaining written authority from the employees.

Immigration New Zealand’s Acting Fraud and Compliance Manager, Dean Blakemore, says that the employment of unlawful migrant workers will not be tolerated. “This case shows that the consequences of such behaviour are serious,” he says. “We will take swift action against any employer who is involved in such activity.”

Mr Blakemore says the case is a good example of close collaboration between INZ fraud and compliance staff and the Labour Inspectorate in the wider Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

“The Ministry is treating this issue as a priority and INZ and Labour Inspectors’ compliance activity is being increased,” he says. “Most employers and most migrant workers are complying with the laws of New Zealand – they are being undermined, and New Zealand’s reputation sullied, by some who are breaking the law.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

2040 Target And Lower Standards: “Swimmable” Rivers Five Times More Likely To Make You Sick

Forest & Bird has condemned the government’s new water quality standards, warning New Zealanders that they lock in current levels of water pollution and allow for a 5-fold increase in the chance of getting sick from swimming in a river.

“Despite an explicit assurance from Minister Smith that the new water standards would provide for human and ecosystem health, he has failed to deliver on either of these things,” says Forest & Bird CEO Kevin Hague. More>>

 

Mayor: 750 New Social And Affordable Homes For Wellington

The next stage of Wellington’s Housing Upgrade Programme will see at least 750 new units of social and affordable housing built over the next decade, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>

ALSO:

22/2: Christchurch Quake Memorial Unveiled

A city, a region, a nation and an international community impacted by the Canterbury Earthquakes will come together to mark the sixth anniversary of the deadly quake and dedicate Oi Manawa Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial. More>>

ALSO:


November Quakes:

Gordon Campbell: On The Mana-Maori Party Deal

If the self-interest involved wasn’t so blatant, the electorate deal between the Maori Party and Hone Harawira would be kind of poignant. It’s a bit like seeing the remaining members of Guns’n’Roses or the Eagles back on the road touring the nostalgia circuit… playing all the old hits of Maori unity and kaupapa Maori politics. More>>

ALSO:

Private Provision: First Social Bond To Focus On Mental Health

New Zealand’s first social bond will help around 1700 people with mental illness into work, Finance Minister Steven Joyce and Social Investment Minister Amy Adams say. More>>

ALSO:

Immigration: Short Reprieve For Nine Indian Students

A temporary hold on deportations of nine Indian students is a step in the right direction but the Government urgently needs to implement safeguards to stop further injustices to more international students, the Green Party says. More>>

EARLIER:


Megaupload Case: High Court Rules Dotcom, Co-Accused Eligible For Extradion

Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom and his three co-accused are eligible for extradition to the United States, New Zealand's High Court ruled... Justice Murray Gilbert upheld a decision by the District Court that there were grounds for Dotcom, Mathias Ortmann, Bram van der Kolk and Finn Batato to be extradited. More>>

ALSO:

PREVIOUSLY:

Port Hills Fire: Midday Update, Monday 20 February

• 9 homes destroyed
• 2 homes with partial damage. Damage includes things like cracked windows, heat damage.
• 3 properties with damage to other external structures e.g sheds or outbuildings More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news