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Immigration busts 27 'illegal' workers at a farm


Officers from the Australian Border Force and the state police raided a farm where 27 suspected illegal workers were found.

27 suspected illegal farm workers were found during a raid at a property in Stanthorpe in Southern Queensland. Australian Border Force officers have found 27 suspected illegal farm workers during a raid at Stanthorpe, south-west of Brisbane.

Australian Border Force officers, accompanied by officers of the Queensland Police raided accommodation dongas at a strawberry farm in the early hours of Tuesday. 

The officers knocked at several doors, waking up the workers, and asked them to get their passports.

The alleged illegal foreign workers were taken into a kitchen area where their passports were checked.

An ABF officer speaking to a suspected illegal worker at a property in Stanthrope.

The video of the raid, released by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, shows a man telling an immigration official he had been in the country for two years on a three-month visa.

"You have been without a visa for a long time. We found you at a farm," an officer tells a worker. 

Workers at Stanthorpe property after the raid.

Minister for Immigration Peter Dutton said the group now faced removal from Australia.

"The Government is serious about ensuring that we have integrity in our visa programmes and we will continue to target individuals and businesses involved in visa fraud, illegal work and the exploitation of foreign nationals," Mr Dutton said.

The Immigration Department last year cancelled over 60,000 visas for a variety of reasons. Nearly 15,000 cancellations were due to overstaying.

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