In response to concerns from the community, officers from Havering Neighbourhood Policing Teams took part in a targeted partnership operation conducted at two commercial premises providing carwash services in at New Road, Rainham.
The operation was led by the Home Office’s Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, supported by police, London Fire Brigade [LFB], and Havering Council’s Immigration and Housing departments.
The activity was in direct response to concerns around fire and licencing regulations, immigration, living conditions and modern slavery.
The two premises were visited on the morning of Tuesday, 3 November and resulted in the following:
– An order was placed on one of the carwash sites closing it and also prohibiting occupation of an adjacent house for living purposes.
– At the second venue, three persons were found to be in the country illegally – they are now being dealt with by immigration authorities.
– Enquiries are also underway into the low pay and long hours worked by the employees. These enquiries are ongoing and could result in prosecution of the business owners.
– London Fire Brigade discovered breaches of fire regulations at both sites which will be further examined and actioned by LFB and Havering Council.
Inspector Rob McElroy of the Met’s East Area Command said: “This operational activity is a perfect example of successful partnership working. All of the lead agencies relating to the issues raised by the community were present, allowing swift action to be taken.
“Local people raised concerns around planning breaches, fire hazards, exploitation of workers and immigration – all of those issues were addressed during this operation.
“I urge anyone with concerns around safeguarding, crime or public safety to contact their local officers without delay. Your local knowledge can, and does, make a difference.”
To contact police with information call 101, Tweet @MetCC or speak with your local Neighbourhood officers.