A Hastings Pizza Hut franchise and its former owner have been convicted and fined today for helping an employee breach visa conditions.
A judge rejected Mahipal Reddy Kolan's request that he be discharged without conviction so that his other franchise, a Subway restaurant, wouldn't be put in jeopardy. He was also fined $1500, while the business was fined $2000.
"The fines were really only incidental," Auckland District Court Judge Noel Sainsbury responded, explaining that it wasn't his job to protect Kolan from the consequences of his actions. "It was the convictions that would bite."
The worker who was unlawfully employed left New Zealand one year ago, according to New Zealand Immigration. Kolan sold the pizza business after the offence.
INZ Assistant General Manager Peter Devoy said today he hopes the judge's decision "sends a strong signal" to employers who illegally hire workers.
"Kolan shows a regard only for himself, entering a guilty plea to the charge, and yet swearing and filing an affidavit denying the offending," Mr Devoy said.