Hawick takeaway worker deported after immigration raid

The Istanbul takeaway in Hawick.
The Istanbul takeaway in Hawick.

A worker employed illegally at a Hawick takeaway has been deported from the UK after a late-night raid by immigration officers, it has emerged.

They swooped on Istanbul Fast Foods on the evening of Thursday, February 8, and arrested three Indian men allegedly working illegally.

The raid has left the owner of the Oliver Place takeaway facing a fine of up £60,000.

A 24-year-old and a 32-year-old were believed to have overstayed their student visas, and another 32-year-old was suspected of being in the UK illegally.

The business owner was served with a referral notice over the alleged immigration breaches and is facing a fine of up to £20,000 per illegal worker unless he can prove that appropriate right-to-work documentation checks had been carried out.

Now, it has emerged that one worker has been deported from the UK and two others face an uncertain future.

A Home Office spokesman said: “A 24-year-old Indian man was removed from the UK and two other men, both aged 32, have been ordered to report to immigration enforcement on a regular basis while their cases are progressed.”

On the same night as the Hawick raid, enforcement officials also made arrests at fast-food outlets in Larkhall and Hamilton during an intelligence-led operation.

Ian Tyldesley, of the Home Office’s Scottish immigration enforcement team, said: “We are happy to work with businesses to explain the simple pre-employment checks needed to establish a person’s right to work in the UK, but to those who choose to ignore the rules the message is clear – we will find you and you will face a heavy financial penalty.

“Illegal working is not victimless. It undercuts honest employers, cheats legitimate jobseekers out of employment opportunities and defrauds the public purse.

“I urge anyone with specific and detailed information about suspected immigration abuse to get in touch.”

No one at Istanbul Fast Foods, shut after the raid but now believed to be trading again, was available for comment.