KULAI: Illegal immigrants are using licensed premises owned by Malaysians to operate their own businesses.
This was uncovered during a joint operation between the Johor Immigration Department and the Kulai Municipal Council (MPKu) in Senai here on Thursday.
A total of 19 foreigners, including two females, were arrested during the raid at Taman Bintang Utama, which saw checks at restaurants, carpet shops and sundry shops.
State Immigration Department deputy assistant director Mohd Hafiz Khamis said that those arrested were from Indonesia, India, Pakistan, Myanmar and Bangladesh.
“Among their offences included misusing their work permits, failing to provide any travel documents and for overstaying.
“Those who misused their work permits were found working at the shops instead of in agriculture and construction as stated in their permits,” he said.
He added that some claimed that they were only working at the shops just for a day to help a friend, to avoid getting arrested.
Hafiz also said that the foreigners were arrested under Section 6(1)(C) of the Immigration Act 1959/63 for not possessing valid travel documents, under Section 17(B) for misusing their permits and under Section 15(1) (c) of the same Act for overstaying.
“They will be brought to our headquarters at the Home Ministry Complex in Setia Tropika for further investigations,” he added.
Meanwhile, MPKu senior enforcement officer Adzman Mohd Taib said the council has confiscated four licences from businesses for allowing foreigners to use them to operate a business.
He added that the operation against the businesses was conducted following feedback from its previous council meeting.