TWO suspected immigration offenders have been found at a restaurant in Lynton following a raid by the UK Border Agency. The enforcement operation was part of planned nationwide action by the UK Border Agency to tackle illegal working, sham marriages, bog

TWO suspected immigration offenders have been found at a restaurant in Lynton following a raid by the UK Border Agency.

The enforcement operation was part of planned nationwide action by the UK Border Agency to tackle illegal working, sham marriages, bogus colleges and organised immigration crime.

Officers went to Tanmoye Restaurant in Lee Road, yesterday (Thursday) evening.

After checking the immigration status of staff, a 49-year-old Bangladeshi man who was preparing food in the kitchen was found to have no right to work in the UK.

He was arrested on suspicion of entering the UK illegally and taken to Barnstaple police station, where he is due to be questioned further today (Friday).

A 46-year-old Bangladeshi man was found in an adjacent room, but was not working in the restaurant. He was also arrested and taken to Barnstaple police station, where he is due to be questioned on suspicion of overstaying his visa.

If it is confirmed that the men are immigration offenders, steps will be taken to remove them from the UK.

All other people on the premises were cleared by agency officers.

Damian Green, the Immigration Minister, said: "The Government has tasked the UK Border Agency with carrying out an intense period of enforcement activity over the summer. We are determined to make it harder than ever for illegal immigrants to come to the UK. Illegal immigration puts pressure on public services, local communities and legitimate businesses at a time when this country cannot afford it. That's why the UK Border Agency is working to cut out illegal employment, sham marriages, bogus colleges and organised traffickers, being used by foreign nationals to try and stay in the UK illegally."

Jane Farleigh, Regional Director of the UK Border Agency in the South West, added: "The UK Border Agency supports and encourages businesses to comply with the UK's immigration laws and we are happy to work with employers to ensure they stay within the rules. Our enforcement visits are always based on information received and we appeal to the public to let us know when they have information about suspected immigration offenders."

Employers unsure of the steps they need to take to avoid employing illegal workers can visit www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/advice-for-employers or they can call the UK Border Agency's Employers Helpline on 0300 123 4699.

Anyone who suspects that illegal workers are being employed at a business in Devon is asked to contact the UK Border Agency on 01752 275161 or visit www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/report-immigration-crime.