Report: Nearly 1,700 employers fined over RM33m for hiring illegal workers

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The Immigration Department has fined 1,691 employers a total of RM33.07 million, after the latter was charged in court for employing undocumented migrants.

The New Straits Times reported its director-general Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud as saying that this indicates the department is strict with employers who commit such offences.

“This dismisses reports in social media that the department has not acted on complaints regarding foreigners living illegally in the country,” he told reporters following an operation at an immigrant housing area in Cyberjaya.

Hari Anggara

Khairul added that for 2019 alone, 1,052 employers were fined a total of RM19.32 million, and for 2020, 509 were fined a total of RM10.45 million, and from January until May this year, 130 employers were fined a total of RM3.2 million.

The operation saw the inspection of 202 immigrants, of whom 46 had proper documentation and were released while 156 were detained for further checks.

Of the illegal immigrants arrested, 42 are from Indonesia, 62 from Bangladesh, 20 from Nepal, 29 from Myanmar, and one from India and Pakistan, respectively. They include 144 men and 12 women aged 23 to 50.

Khairul said 162 agency personnel including the police, the National Registration Department, the Peninsular Malaysia Labour Department (JTKSM) and the Civil Defence Force, participated in the 11pm-2am operation.

“It is believed the area started to become an illegal immigrant housing area five years ago and has become even more populated since the first movement control order was implemented in March last year.

“The Immigration Department also released four people and their families as they possessed United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees cards. A three-month surveillance was conducted at the illegal housing area, prior to the operation,” he said.

The arrested immigrants will be brought to the Immigration Department’s headquarters in Putrajaya for Covid-19 screening and for further investigations. If found guilty, they will be detained at the temporary detention centre in Semenyih before being deported back to their home countries. – MMO