Indian and Vietnamese illegal workers jailed

30 May 2016

Three illegal workers comprising one Indian and two Vietnamese, each holding recognisance forms, were jailed at Shatin Magistrates' Courts and Fanling Magistrates' Courts on May 27 and 28.
 
During an anti-illegal worker operation on January 8, Immigration Department (ImmD) investigators found one male Indian worker aged 39 working on the rooftop of a house under renovation in Yuen Long. Upon identity checking, he was found to be non-refoulement claimant and holder of recognisance form issued by the ImmD, which prohibits him from taking employment.
 
Later, during an anti-illegal worker operation mounted on May 26, one male Vietnamese worker aged 32 was found conducting cleaning work at a residential building in Ngau Chi Wan, while another male Vietnamese worker aged 37 was found loading goods onto the container of a truck parked on a street in San Po Kong. Upon identity checking, they were found to be non-refoulement claimants and holders of recognisance forms issued by the ImmD, which prohibit them from taking employment. Furthermore, they were also suspected of using and being in possession of a suspected forged Hong Kong Identity Card.
 
The three arrestees were each charged with taking up employment after landing in Hong Kong unlawfully and remaining in Hong Kong without the authority of the Director of Immigration or while being a person in respect of whom a removal order or deportation order was in force. They pleaded guilty to the charge and were sentenced to 15 months' imprisonment.  Two of the arrestees were also charged with using a forged identity card and were sentenced to 15 months' imprisonment. All charges are to run concurrently.
 
The ImmD spokesman warned that, as stipulated in section 38AA of the Immigration Ordinance, illegal immigrants or people who are the subject of a removal order or a deportation order are prohibited from taking any employment, whether paid or unpaid, or establishing or joining in any business. Offenders are liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of $50,000 and up to three years' imprisonment. The Court of Appeal has issued a guideline ruling that a sentence of 15 months' imprisonment should be applied in such cases.
 
The spokesman also warned that it was an offence to use or possess a forged Hong Kong identity card. Offenders are liable to prosecution and a maximum penalty of a $100,000 fine and up to 10 years' imprisonment.