The Federal Court has found a Darwin computer company, Hallmark Computer Pty Ltd, and its owner have committed several breaches of sponsorship obligations to three of its 457 visa holders.
The company has been ordered to pay $430,000 in penalties to the Federal Government as well as more than $83,000 in restitution to the workers. Sole director and shareholder of the company, Ashok Alexander was also required to pay a personal penalty of $86,000.
The breaches included underpayment of the sponsored employees, illegal recovery of costs from employee and directing an employee to work in a different occupation to their nominated occupation under the sponsorship.
The Minister for Immigration and Border Protection Peter Dutton said, “The 457 visa program is designed to help businesses recruit skilled workers from overseas where there are genuine skills shortages locally.
“It is not a means to exploit foreign workers or bring in workers on a visa when local workers can fill vacant positions.
“Measures in the 457 program are intended to protect overseas skilled workers from exploitation by ensuring they are paid the equivalent Australian market wages and conditions as local workers.”
Source: Migration Institute of Australia and Minister of Immigration and Border Protection, Peter Dutton