BORDER police have arrested 14 people following a dawn raid at a Hounslow warehouse.
Officers from the UK Border Agency searched Scanwell Freight Services, in Amberley Way, on Monday. They arrested eight male workers, all from India, for a variety of immigration offences.
The company now faces a fine of up to £90,000 for employing them, plus a ninth member of staff suspected of working illegally, unless it can prove it carried out the correct checks.
As a result of the arrests, immigration officers carried out searches at nearby addresses in Hayes and Southall, where a further six people were detained.
Half the 14 people arrested – five Indian men, an Indian woman and a South African man – remain in detention pending their removal from the UK. The other seven have been granted bail while the UKBA seeks travel documents for them.
Ben Kelso, UKBA's head of Hounslow Local Immigration Team, said the arrests were part of an ongoing clampdown.
"Illegal working has a serious impact on communities, taking jobs from those who are genuinely allowed to work," he said. "We are happy to work with businesses to ensure they know what checks have to be done on staff, but those who do break the law will face action."
Businesses failing to carry out adequate checks on staff could be fined up to £10,000 per illegal employee. They can find out more about what steps to take by visiting www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk or calling 0300 123 4699.
Anyone who suspects illegal workers are being employed at a business is asked to call Crimestoppers, free and anonymously, on 0800 555 111.