Almost 100 illegal nail salon workers arrested in Government crackdown
News surfaced over the Christmas period that nearly 100 illegal workers were arrested in nail salons nationwide.
More than 280 salons were raided by immigration officers for suspected immigration offences.
The raids took place between November 27 and December 3 2016, and 97 arrests were made of both workers and employers suspected of employing illegal immigrants and putting them at risk of "modern slavery". Operation Magnify was a government drive to tackle illegal working and identify those at risk of being exploited under the guise of working in nail salons.
Nail salons were targeted as a specific “risk” industry and the operation found more than a dozen vulnerable people working in salons. In addition, 68 businesses now facing fines of up to £20,000 per illegal worker.
"This operation sends a strong message to those employers who ruthlessly seek to exploit vulnerable people and wilfully abuse our immigration laws," said minister Robert Goodwill in a Home Office statement.
He added: "Modern slavery is a barbaric crime which destroys the lives of some of the most vulnerable in our society. This Government has taken world-leading action to tackle it by introducing the Modern Slavery Act, giving law enforcement agencies the tools they need and increasing support and protection for victims.”
The Act also means businesses can be temporarily closed if they do not comply with the law.
Most of those arrested were Vietnamese nationals but were also from countries including China, Nigeria and India.