The owner of a Wigan takeaway is preparing to launch an appeal after being fined thousands of pounds following an immigration raid.
Shamsur Rahman, who owns Standish Tandoori, was hit with a hefty £10,000 penalty following a surprise visit from the Home office in June 2018.
Acting on intelligence, immigration enforcement officers visited Standish Tandoori and found two Bangladeshi men aged 34 and 41, who had overstayed their visas.
The Home Office says these men were working illegally at the Pole Street eatery.
But Mr Rahman, who has owned Standish Tandoori for 27 years, insists the men were not his employees but were in fact friends who had been invited to attend Iftar - the evening meal with which Muslims end their daily fast during Ramadan - in a private area above the takeaway.
He is now working with his solicitor to have the fine dismissed and clear his name.
He said: “The locals know me, my staff know me. I have served the community for 27 years.
“I could not have kept a person here illegally. I am fighting to prove this.
“We will prove they were our guests. I am trying to clear my name. I am going to prove these were not my staff - they were not in my shop, I keep telling them.”
Mr Rahman was fined £10,000 for hiring workers who did not have legal rights to work in the UK. following the immigration raid.