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Charges laid following INZ compliance operation Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Immigration New Zealand (INZ) has filed a charge over the use of unlawful migrant labour by an employer at an Auckland construction site.

The prosecution under section 350(1)(b) of the Immigration Act 2009 follows an INZ compliance operation carried out in Auckland in March this year. 10 male Chinese nationals were found to be unlawfully working in New Zealand in breach of their visa conditions.

Deputy Head of Immigration, Stephen Vaughan, says as a result of INZ’s investigation, an employer connected to the construction site has been charged. They are due to appear in the Waitakere District Court on 24 June 2021.

“The charge relates to the employer allowing a person to work when they were not entitled to do so. The offence carries a potential fine of up to 10 thousand dollars”, Mr Vaughan says.

To respect the possibility of suppression orders, INZ is not naming the employer at this time.

Mr Vaughan says the prosecution sends a clear message to employers that they need to follow the rules when using migrant labour.

“INZ takes a proactive approach in ensuring employers follow the law as unlawful migrant workers are more at risk of being exploited. INZ wants to ensure the well-being of migrants and a fair labour market. This is why we are committed to taking action when this type of behaviour by employers occurs”, Mr Vaughan says.

As the case is now before the Courts, INZ will be making no further comment or doing interviews.

INZ encourages anyone who is aware of the illegal use of migrant labour to contact the MBIE Service Centre on 0800 20 90 20.

Alternatively, they can report an issue anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, or via an online Crimestoppers form.


For further information contact the MBIE media line on 0274 422 141 or email us at:

media@mbie.govt.nz