TWO unlawful non-citizens believed to be involved in organised illegal worker exploitation have been detained after Australian Border Force officers executed a search warrant on a property in Naracoorte on Thursday.
ABF field operations officers began investigating the two after receiving serious allegations of people working in breach of visa conditions in the agriculture 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, assisted by South Australian Police, also located $22,700 in cash at the residence.
Commander James Copeman from ABF’s enforcement command said all three were being held in detention pending removal from Australia.
“This operation specifically targeted labour hire intermediaries, their contractors and employers suspected of exploiting foreign workers,” he said.
“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.”
Comm Copeman said the ABF was committed to tackling illegal worker exploitation in Australia’s regional and metropolitan areas.
Investigations into labour hire intermediaries, their contractors and the movement of significant amounts of currency in the region are continuing.
Contact the Border Watch authority at australia.gov.au/borderwatch if you are aware of an individual, business or employer who might be facilitating visa fraud or illegal work.