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News 2006
News ->Employers face £2000 fines under new immigration bill


EMPLOYERS FACE £2000 FINES UNDER NEW IMMIGRATION BILL
(30 March 2006)

Tony McNulty, Immigration MinisterImportant new measures to boost Government powers to tackle illegal working and strengthen UK borders became law today. Having received Royal Assent the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality (IAN) Act, will enable Government to tackle illegal working through a new civil penalties scheme for employers by introducing fines of up to £2,000 per illegal employee, custodial sentences of up to two-years and unlimited fines for those found knowingly to use or exploit illegal workers.

Provisions in the Act will:

* restrict appeals for those refused entry to the UK to work or study. The UK will continue to welcome to the UK genuine migrants who meet the transparent and objective criteria set out under the Government's Points-Based System for managed migration;

* tackle illegal working through a new civil penalties scheme for employers by introducing fines of up to £2,000 per illegal employee, custodial sentences of up to two-years and unlimited fines for those found knowingly to use or exploit illegal workers;

* strengthen our borders by allowing data sharing between the Immigration Service, police and customs, as part of the e-Borders programme. It will support the global roll-out of fingerprinting visa applicants by giving powers to Immigration Officers to verify identity against biometrics contained in travel documents; and

* respond to new security threats by denying asylum to terrorists; improving our ability to strip citizenship from and deport those who pose a serious risk to the UK's interests; and speed up the appeals process in national security deportation cases.

Immigration Minister Tony McNulty said: "I am very pleased to have seen the IAN Bill pass successfully through Parliament and that I am able to announce the introduction of these new provisions into law today following Royal Assent.

"These measures take further the already good progress the Government has made in implementing its five year strategy on immigration and asylum, which will deliver a system that is strictly controlled, fair and works in the economic interests of Britain.

"The provisions within the Act will help the Government in dealing with people who pose a threat to the UK's national security, continue our work to strengthen and modernise our borders using new technology, develop closer working between border control agencies and restrict the right of those refused entry to challenge a decision.

"At the same time we will ensure migration is managed to meet the UK's economic needs, while being robust against abuse. The new civil penalties scheme will help to ensure those people who benefit from the contribution migrant workers make also share responsibility for making our immigration system work effectively. These measures build on the Government's plans to implement a new points-based system for managing migration into the UK, which we set out in March this year, to ensure that we benefit from the skills that migrants can bring to our economy."

The Government will begin introducing provisions within the Act in June, with full implementation not expected until 2008.

 
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