4 arrested following Garda search of meat processor

A multi-agency workplace search involving Gardaí attached to the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) arrested four people following a search of a meat processor in Co. Meath last week.

Members from GNIB accompanied officials from the Work Relations Commission and Department of Social Protection to search the offices and warehouse of a meat processing company in Co. Meath, a statement from An Garda Síochána confirmed.

As a result of enquiries and intelligence, it was established that this company was employing persons in contravention of the Immigration and Employment Permits Legislation, the Garda statement added.

A total of 19 individuals were discovered in contravention of either immigration or permit legislation.

“Four people were arrested and charged under immigration legislation; they were subsequently bailed to appear at Swords Court on Wednesday, February 19, and Balbriggan Court on Thursday, February 27.

“A fifth person claimed asylum.

“And an additional 11 people were encountered with not having any current immigration status in the state; they will be subsequently removed in accordance with legislation,” the Garda statement said.

A further three non-EU nationals were interviewed due to possible discrepancies in relation to work permits.

An earlier search took place on Thursday, January 30 last, at the warehouse of an Asian food products supplier and a number of attached offices, in a business park in West Dublin.

“Following investigations, enquiries and intelligence gathered by GNIB, it was established that this company was suspected of employing persons in contravention of the Immigration and Employment Permits Legislation.

“It was also established that a number of persons who were subject to deportation orders were being employed at this business.

During the course of the search and inspection, a total of six people were arrested. Three people were arrested on foot of live deportation orders. The remaining three people were arrested for having no legal status to be in the state and subsequently appeared before Blanchardstown District Court on Friday, January 31, where they were remanded until March 13.

“During the same search, the Department of Social Protection officers suspended a number of payments, including Disability Allowance, Rent Supplement and Child Benefit as a result of this operation and estimated potential savings of €100,000 to the state.

“The Workplace Relations Commission is continuing to investigate to ensure compliance with Employment Legislation.

“The Work Relations Commission is continuing to investigate to ensure compliance with Employment Legislation,” the Garda statement concluded.

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