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Compliance Operation Uncovers Unlawful Workers

An Immigration New Zealand (INZ) compliance operation focused on the construction industry has uncovered the presence of unlawful workers.

Immigration New Zealand can confirm that 10 male Chinese nationals have found to be unlawfully in New Zealand during a visit to a construction site in Auckland yesterday.

The men are being held in Police custody while arrangements are made for their deportation to China. They were found to have been unlawfully in New Zealand for periods ranging from 17 months to three years four months.

During the operation, INZ staff have also met with lawful migrant workers and conducted checks to ensure they are being treated fairly by their employers. INZ has also provided education packs to employers to ensure they have all the information they need about their obligations.

Stephen Vaughan, Deputy Head of Immigration, says the operation is about being proactive in preventing migrant exploitation and ensuring businesses follow the rules when using migrant labour.

He says, “The illegal use of migrant labour poses a real risk of migrant exploitation, which is something INZ is keen to combat. It’s also a disadvantage to businesses that follow the rules and are doing the right thing in their use of foreign workers”.

Mr Vaughan also says it is in the best interests of migrants to ensure they observe the rules of their visa status.

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