Police raids over suspected religious worker fraud

Police investigating suspected immigration fraud linked to religious workers have raided 16 addresses.

The Home Office said the operations were part of an ongoing investigation into the Manchester-based Khalsa Missionary Society.

It is claimed immigrants are brought to England from India to live as religious workers but then disappear.

Raids were carried out in Birmingham, Hounslow, Leicester, Luton, Slough, Southall and Southampton.

The Khalsa Missionary Society describes itself as a "non-political, non-profit making, independent body which acts as an umbrella organisation helping to develop, assist and support [the] Sikh community in United Kingdom".

Nobody was available for comment at the society's Cheetham Hill Road base.

A Home Office spokesman said: "This is a large-scale operation linked to suspected immigration crime targeting several locations across the UK."

In September, 17 people were arrested as part of the same operation when properties were searched in Manchester, Glasgow, Huddersfield, Middlesex, Pangbourne and Wolverhampton.

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