SINGAPORE - Thirteen people have been arrested for immigration-related offences that include overstaying in Singapore and employing or harbouring an immigration offender.
The seven men and six women were arrested in an operation in Singapore on Thursday (Feb 22), the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said in a statement on Monday.
Of the 13, nine of them aged between 25 and 49 had overstayed in Singapore.
The other four people are aged between 36 and 57 and include a Singaporean. They are being investigated for employing or harbouring an immigration offender.
Investigations are ongoing.
ICA said it takes a serious view of attempts to overstay, enter or depart Singapore illegally.
The penalties for overstaying or illegal entry are a jail term of up to six months and a minimum of three strokes of the cane.
Those found guilty of illegal departure can be jailed for up to six months and/or fined up to $2,000.
ICA advised home owners to check the status of their prospective foreign tenants to ensure that their status in Singapore is legal.
Those who wish to rent their premises to foreigners must conduct these three checks: Check the tenant's original immigration or work pass; cross-check the particulars on the tenant's pass against the particulars on his original passport; and verify the validity of his pass by checking with the issuing authority.
If the home owner is found guilty of carrying out only one of the three due-diligence checks or knowingly harbouring overstayers or illegal immigrants, he can be sentenced to between six months' and two years' jail and fined up to $6,000.
Home owners convicted of carrying out only two of three due-diligence checks face up to 12 months' jail and/or a fine of up to $6,000.