Three asians detained over exploitation of illegal workers


Two unlawful non-citizens believed to be involved in organised illegal worker exploitation have been detained after Australian Border Force (ABF) officers, assisted by South Australian Police (SAPOL), executed a search warrant on a property in Naracoorte, South East of Adelaide on Thursday 2 August.

ABF Field Operations officers began investigating the two after receiving serious allegations of people working in breach of visa conditions in the agricultural sector.

The 48-year-old Thai man and a 51-year-old Malaysian woman were detained along with an additional 40-year-old Malaysian man.

The three individuals had overstayed their visas.

Officers also located a total of $22,700 cash at the residence.

Commander James Copeman from ABF’s Enforcement Command said all three are being held in detention pending removal from Australia.

“This operation specifically targeted labour hire intermediaries, their contractors and employers suspected of exploiting foreign workers.

“Illegal workers are often underpaid and poorly treated, and those facilitating their employment are making significant profits at their expense. It also puts legitimate local businesses at a disadvantage.” 

“The exploitation of foreign workers can have ongoing negative impact on Australian communities and individuals. The ABF is committed to tackling illegal worker exploitation in Australia’s regional and metropolitan areas,” Commander Copeman said.

Investigations into labour hire intermediaries, their contractors and the movement of significant amounts of currency in the region are continuing.