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Asylum seekers used as car wash 'slaves'

TT/The Local/gm · 23 Oct 2011, 10:22

Published: 23 Oct 2011 10:22 GMT+02:00

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An investigation by Sveriges Radio (SR) has revealed that the trend of using people without official papers in Sweden is becoming more and more widespread across the country. These people are being paid very low wages and are subjected to appalling conditions, according to the report.

"This is a new phenomenon,” Jerk Wiberg, head of the border Police in Stockholm, told the “Kaliber” programme.

The chance to exploit cheap labour, where workers are apparently often earning as little as 20 kronor ($3) per hour, has seen dozens of car washes spring up over the country in recent years, with a subsequent rise in arrests by the police.

“Last year we did not carry out a single raid at a car wash. This year we have made 23,” added Wiberg.

In the Stockholm area, half of the raids carried by police uncovered illegal immigrants, while similar incidents have also been reported in Gothenburg and Malmö.

Police found that in many cases, conditions were harsh for the washers, who often have to work 10-12 hour days, earning no more than 30 kronor hourly in the process. In many cases, the workers are living on the premises in slave-like conditions, the radio programme claims.

Story continues below…

“People in these car washes are working under conditions that amount to pure human trafficking, ” added Conny Svensson at the Gothenburg tax office.

TT/The Local/gm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

11:25 October 23, 2011 by saar
I'd rather use an authomatic car wash.
12:35 October 23, 2011 by freezebtn
They should be locked up or sent home not out there working.
12:53 October 23, 2011 by Addendum
Who owns the car washes? How do people without official papers (usually) come into the country? What are the employers being charged with? If found guilty, what is their sentencing, restitution paid to employees, tax authorities, etc.?
13:14 October 23, 2011 by hackie

Keep pondering or ask the police.
13:50 October 23, 2011 by Great Scott
This is no different than what the Moderates are doing now. Reinfeldt and Borg are running the very same operation with normal Swedes under the name of phase 3. Phase 3 is an atrocity that uses unemployed people to work for nothing. But the people that take these people on are being paid 5,000sek per month out of tax payer's money.
14:38 October 23, 2011 by Brianito
Actually, I'm about to embark on this great Phase 3 adventure, and I can say, that if you don't have A Kassa entitlement then the deal is 180kr per day after tax. So can you blame these people working for 30kr an hour ?? Oh, and if you get a full time job, within the 1st month then all the money has to repaid. Do you think this is an incentive? The employers take full advantage and the government allow it to happen. They don't give you the "pittance" of a payment to do nothing and I thought slavery was outlawed in most western countries. Where are the "Human Rights Activists" now ??????
15:40 October 23, 2011 by Larry Thrash
An illegal alien is called an undocumented immigrant, like a driver of a car without a drivers license is called an undocumented driver? The undocumented driver is fined (taxed) out the wazoo, the undocumented immigrant is given free money.
16:00 October 23, 2011 by occassional
A lot of phenomena will find the lackadaisical Swedish police force (farce) wondering. Villains here have a field day. Watch this country as it goes to the dogs while the police discuss women bras.
17:29 October 23, 2011 by Iraniboy
Ethical questions can be very hard sometimes. The ethical issue here is if it is more ethical to let them work for 3$ an hour with safety or 3$ a day with bombs and war!!
17:41 October 23, 2011 by Opinionfool
@occasional[quote]A lot of phenomena will find the lackadaisical Swedish police force (farce) wondering.[/quote]No different to the English police force that discovered a bunch of Romany people had imprisoned and then compelled illegal immigrants to work for below minimum wage. The English police only got onto the case because one of the immigrantes managed to escape.
18:21 October 23, 2011 by rouzi
No, then you expected the asylum seekers to be hired as managers or maybe immigration offices employers.

The condition is off course difficult for these people but at least they can earn money and live on somehow.

What police and authority seem to be more worry about is that they are given jobs.

The aim is the creation of a condition to bring asylum seekers under pressure to accept leaving country.
19:07 October 23, 2011 by Grokh
simple fine the hell out of those who are exploiting or even give them jail time.

And deport the ones breaking the laws.
02:35 October 24, 2011 by Bolante007
Why do Sweden still take these people? I mean you have enough national issues, why can't the gov. first look after its citizens and leave the other ones for later? Sweden should have tough immigration laws like those in Japan.
03:38 October 24, 2011 by Scansson
"Asylum seekers used as car wash 'slaves'"

...and the point is?...

These so called 'Asylum Seekers' should be grateful to have a job for a little money to help fund their covert political muslim terrorist activities here in Sverige.

If anything they should at the least be cleaning public toilets, as washing cars may be a step up the corporate ladder : )
08:50 October 24, 2011 by rise
Illegal immigrants are hardly "asylum seekers", they're just here, hiding from the authorities for whatever reasons!
09:48 October 24, 2011 by Twiceshy
Illegal immigrants break the law of fascist government, so, that's good. Fascist government made possibilities for slavery with their rules against immigrants. Trafficking (forced prostitution, slave labor, etc) is connected with fascist (visa) politics. Government made people to be illegal and businessmen just misuse political situation. So, illegal immigrants and businessmen are last guilty in this slavery.
11:54 October 24, 2011 by canuk
why shouldnt these people be forced to work for free? if they dont like it, they can go back to whatever hole they crawled out of, which im guess is a lot worse then the living conditions here in sweden. why should they get everything for free, at my expense (as a taxpayer).
14:11 October 24, 2011 by DAVID T
Asylum seekers are looked after by the State and this is paid for by the tax payer - there is a difference between Asylum seekers and Illegal immigrants.

No matter - but as far as I know there is no minimum wage in sweden
00:32 October 25, 2011 by johnoleson
Dear twiceshy,

If rules on immigration are just a byproduct of a fascist government, why not let Sweden truly be free and remove all immigration restrictions? I see no reason to stop 10 or 15 million Chinese who would seek a better life. I'm sure China would even pay for the transportation. The Chinese are ambitious and wouldn't require government assistance and with their family loyalties they would take care of their own. They could work longer hours for less money than the native born swedes and this could make the Swedish economy boom. I see a European Hong Kong. Just say no to immigration restrictions...NOT
11:02 October 25, 2011 by Jes
30 Kronor an hour is much much more than what the government pays to job-seekers who do " praktik" . The unemployed are sent by Arbetisförmedlingen to work all day all week for less than 3000 kronor a month . After six months , they get no assurence that they will stay on the job .

I wou´ld wash cars for 300 hundred a day than work in a car garage that is owned by a friend of someone who works in A/ förmedling
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