The permits, which can ultimately lead to permanent residency status in Sweden, were sold together with the offer of jobs at one of the fast food restaurant’s stores in Stockholm.
“It has come to our attention that there may have been criminal activity at one of our restaurants in the Stockholm area. We are looking very seriously at this and we filed a police report on November 5th,” Håkan Ström, a press officer at McDonald’s Sweden told the TT news agency.
The permits are reported to have been sold for around 100,000 kronor ($15,000) a piece, according to a report in the Expressen daily.
The managers are reported to have recruited staff from overseas with the promise of jobs and thus work permits.
One of the employees involved was, according to the newspaper, obliged to hand over between 3,000 and 11,000 kronor from his wage packet each month in order to pay the manager.
It is furthermore reported that when the recruited staff complained about having to hand over some of their earnings, they had been summoned to the manager’s office for interrogation.
On at least one occasion the manager is suspected of having confiscated an employee’s passport.
The two suspected managers have been suspended from their jobs pending police enquiries. The managers are reported to have denied the allegations.