The Sha Tin Magistrates’ Court. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Four asylum seekers were sentenced at Sha Tin Magistrates Court on Monday to 15 months in prison for working illegally in Hong Kong.

Officers from the Immigration Department raided an educational institute in Wan Chai on Hong Kong Island on February 22 and arrested two Indian men, both aged 26, after they were caught disposing of garbage, according to a government release.

In another joint operation by the Immigration and Labor departments and police on the same day, officers caught a 52-year-old woman and a 57-year-old man, both Vietnamese, working illegally in a restaurant in Sheung Wan on Hong Kong Island as dishwashers.

An employer suspected of hiring illegal workers was also arrested.

Hong Kong does not allow refugees or asylum seekers to work or establish or join any business during their stay in the city. Offenders are liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of HK$50,000 (US$6,385) and up to three years’ imprisonment.

Read: Two Bangladeshis, Hong Kong employer jailed for illegal work

Asia Times Financial is now live. Linking accurate news, insightful analysis and local knowledge with the ATF China Bond 50 Index, the world's first benchmark cross sector Chinese Bond Indices. Read ATF now.