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The Pom Queen

Perth Strawberry Farm Raided - Illegal Workers

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Australian Border Force (ABF) officers have raided a strawberry farm on the outskirts of Perth and detained dozens of illegal foreign workers.


Officials said 36 illegal workers were found during raids on farms in Bullsbook and Wanneroo in the past few days.


They included 28 people working in breach of their visa conditions and eight illegal foreign workers.


The ABF said the raids were part of a joint operation with federal and state police to target labour hire firms and employers suspected of exploiting foreign workers.


"This multi-agency investigation targeted those involved in the organisation of visa fraud, illegal work and the exploitation of foreign nationals," the agency said in a statement.


A farm spokesman, Jamie Michael, told ABC Perth they had 240 people working on the day of the raids.


He said immigration officials had informed them some of the workers needed to be further processed.


Mr Michael — who is a committee member of the strawberry industry's peak body, Strawberries Australia — said it appeared those workers were provided by a third party labour contractor.


Border force officials search a worker up against a wall at a strawberry farm in Perth.


ABF Superintendent Clinton Sims said his agency was committed to tackling the practice of illegal work in Australia.


"The ABF encourages businesses to meet their obligations and will deal firmly with those who deliberately choose to do the wrong thing," he said.

"This operation shows the work the ABF and its partner agencies are undertaking to target illegal labour hire operations and to stamp out illegal work and the exploitation of foreign nationals.


"Those found to be employing illegal workers can face criminal penalties, which carry fines for individuals up to $25,200 and/or two years imprisonment and up to $126,000 for corporations per illegal worker."


Mr Michael said during a recent AGM of Strawberries Australia, it was agreed the industry needed to look closer at industrial practices and setting up a code of conduct.



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If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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