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Sweden proposes harsher fines for firms hiring undocumented migrants

Staff Writer |
The Swedish government proposed a list of measures to make it harder for paperless migrants to stay in Sweden.

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These include tougher fines on companies that hire illegal migrants, seeing over the production and distribution of personal identification cards, and giving police greater authority to finger-print, check IDs and use force to carry out deportation orders, Swedish public television broadcaster SVT reported.

Companies are currently fined 2,500 U.S. dollars for hiring people living in Sweden illegally. The Swedish government proposes doubling the fine to 5,000 U.S. dollars, and then to 10,000 U.S. dollars in a second phase for companies that have had illegal employees for more than three months.

The proposals, presented Thursday in a press conference with Interior Minister Anders Ygeman and Minister for Justice and Migration Morgan Johansson, are intended to facilitate and expedite the deportation of asylum seekers whose applications have been denied.

"Employers that exploit people who are already vulnerable should feel the sting," Johansson said.

The public debate surrounding the repatriation of asylum seekers whose applications have been denied skyrocketed in Sweden after the terror attack in Stockholm on April 7.

Rakhmat Akilov, an Uzbek man, was arrested for driving a truck that killed four people and injured 15 others. Akilov had been living in Sweden illegally after his asylum application was denied.

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