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Bangladeshi couple found guilty of migrant exploitation Wednesday, 6 March 2019

A Bangladeshi couple who are New Zealand citizens have been found guilty on a number of exploitation and other immigration related charges.

The charges relate to Mohammed Atiqul Islam and Nafisa Ahmed’s previous ownership of a sweet making business in Auckland.

Mohammed Atiqul Islam was found guilty at Auckland District Court on 10 charges of exploitation and seven other immigration related offences. Islam was also found guilty of three charges of attempting to pervert the course of justice. Nafisa Ahmed was jointly found guilty of seven exploitation charges. The exploitation charges related to five victims.

The maximum penalty on the exploitation, false and misleading information and aiding and abetting charges is seven years’ imprisonment and / or a fine not exceeding $100,000.The maximum penalty for attempting to pervert the course of justice is seven years’ imprisonment.

Although the couple were found not guilty of two human trafficking charges Immigration New Zealand (INZ) Acting General Manager Jock Gilray says the guilty verdicts send a strong message to the community that migrant exploitation will not be tolerated.

“The charges against Islam and Ahmed are the result of painstaking work by INZ investigators and a number of people across a range of agencies,” Mr Gilray says. “Exploiting migrants is an abhorrent practice that undermines human rights and creates an uneven playing field for the vast majority of New Zealand business that seek to comply with New Zealand law.”

The couple will be sentenced on 17 April.

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