Hire illegals and we will freeze assets, warns Immigration

PETALING JAYA: Employers hiring and protecting illegal foreign workers will face the full brunt of the law with the Immigration Department planning to start freezing their assets, Star Online reported.

Pointing to a provision under Section 56(1) of the Immigration Act, the department’s director-general Mustafar Ali said the power to freeze assets and bank accounts had simply not been fully enforced all this time.

“We don’t want the public to get shocked when we finally take this measure come October this year. It’s not a new thing.

“We hope the media can relay the message to the public so that we can create awareness, as well as inform employers of the consequences they face when they protect their illegal foreign workers,” he was quoted as saying by the news portal.

He added that the department has already receive legal advice on how to proceed on this matter.

“The department is giving employers until the end of this month to sort everything, including their workers’ travel documents, visas and permits.”

Meanwhile, on the issue of blacklisted Malaysian travellers, Mustafar, who was the number two at the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) before his transfer to Immigration last month, said a one-stop 24-hour help desk needs to be set up at the airport.

“We will consult with National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN), Inland Revenue Board and the Malaysian Insolvency Department to help solve the issue of blacklisted Malaysian travellers.

“We would like to suggest to these agencies to come up with a 24-hour help desk at the airport so that they are accessible to the public at all times.

“Although the Immigration Department is reachable at all times, the department is only a gatekeeper and all orders must come from these agencies,” he said, according to Star Online.