Ten immigration offenders arrested

     The Immigration Department and the Hong Kong Police Force yesterday (August 18) jointly mounted an anti-illegal employment operation codenamed "Windsand" in North District, New Territories. During the operation, 10 Mainland visitors comprising two men and eight women aged 39 to 67 were arrested for breaching their conditions of stay by being involved in suspected parallel goods trading at Kwu Tung Road in Lok Ma Chau. The goods included milk powder, red wine, champagne, mooncakes, nutritious supplements, trainers, facial products and daily necessities.

     Since September 2012, a number of "Windsand" operations have been conducted, during which a total of 1 344 Mainlanders and 14 Hong Kong residents were arrested for suspected involvement in parallel goods trading. Of these, 201 Mainlanders were prosecuted for breach of conditions of stay, while the remaining 1 143 people were repatriated. Among those prosecuted, 192 out of 201 were sentenced to imprisonment for four weeks to three months and charges were withdrawn for another nine people.

     "Visitors are not allowed to take up employment in Hong Kong, whether paid or unpaid, without the permission of the Director of Immigration. Offenders are liable to prosecution and upon conviction face a maximum fine of $50,000 and up to two years' imprisonment. Aiders and abettors are also liable to prosecution and penalties. The Immigration Department will continue to take enforcement action with related law enforcement departments against the offences concerned," an Immigration Department spokesman said.

Ends/Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Issued at HKT 16:26