UK: 11 agency staff have been arrested at Marriott Regents Park in London who were employed illegally as cleaners, porters and maids.
The 11 staff members worked through third party recruitment agencies, under two separate subcontractors.
A release from the UK government said that the staff worked 15 hours a day and were “significantly underpaid… working at the hotel for half the normal salary”.
All 11 people, of six different nationalities, did not have the right to work in the UK. One had been smuggled into the country illegally.
Five of the staff were detained pending their removal from the country, whilst six were bailed and required to report regularly to the Home Office.
The visit from Home Office had been arranged with support from Marriott Regents Park. It took place as part of a wider campaign targeting illegal working in the hospitality sector.
Suran Padiachie, deputy director of immigration enforcement and compliance at the Home Office said: “I’m grateful to Marriott for their cooperation with this case. Their support allowed my officers to swiftly identify the illegal workers and take action against their third party employers to ensure they face appropriate sanctions.
“Illegal working exploits vulnerable people and damages the economy, which is why we’re using the full weight of the law to clamp down on rogue employers and remove those with no right to be in the UK.”
The employers of the 11 agency staff have been handed a civil penalty referral notice, which could result in fines of up to £20,000 for each illegal worker. In August, it was announced that such fines would be tripled at the start of 2024.