Two men, one a Nepalese and the other from Saudi Arabia, were jailed by a Shatin Magistrates’ Court after being caught in a raid by Hong Kong’s Immigration Department at the end of March, according to a government statement published on Thursday.
The Nepalese man, 34, was sentenced to 15 months; the Saudi Arabian, 55, received six weeks, it said. The two men were found working as dishwashers in a North Point restaurant during the raid, it said.
One of the men was a non-refoulement claimant, a status given to people claiming asylum who are permitted to stay in Hong Kong but not to work.
Separately, a Hong Kong resident who pleaded guilty to employing a 29-year-old Indian, who was also a non-refoulement claimant, received an eight-week sentence on Thursday.
Hong Kong does not grant refugees asylum, but allows them to remain while their applications are being assessed and, if accepted, while the United Nations arranges for resettlement in another country. Because they are not allowed to work, many find it difficult to survive from day-to-day. There are also some who use the application system as a means to remain and take up illegal employment.