Thai blueberry pickers arrested and expelled from Norway
Seven Thai blueberry pickers were arrested in Hedmark on Wednesday. They all lacked work permits and are therefore expelled from the country. The employer is likewise charged in the case.
The police report to NRK that the berry pickers lived under appalling conditions without employment contracts or wages. They worked for a Thai woman who is now charged by the police.
– What makes the matter so serious is that these seven have been recruited by a woman with right of residence having shod herself without having given them an employment contract, evading paying tax and received undeclared income from these, says section head of the immigration unit, Silja Strømme.
The berry pickers have likely been in Norway since July.
– They lived under very bad conditions in a caravan, and we can not see that they have received salary or other social benefits. The person who has recruited them has violated the Immigration Act’s provisions on illegal labour and exploited people in a vulnerable situation, says Strømme to NRK.
According to the section leader, the woman has acknowledged the relationship. The police do not know if berries have been sold on the black market and if so, to which extent.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today