More than 1,200 men and women inspectors would start raiding companies, markets and public places across the Kingdom on Monday to check for illegal workers and Saudis harboring them, a Ministry of Labor official said.
Abdullah Abu Thunain, undersecretary for inspections, told Arab News that the raids would take place with officials from the country’s security agencies. The inspectors would check the validity of workers’ residency cards and their professions.
Violators face fines of up to SR100,000, two years in prison, or both for repeat offenders. Security sources told Arab News earlier that the District Police Department had formed a task force comprising personnel from various police and security agencies.
Abu Thunain said the task force would cover pharmacies, barbershops, restaurants, security guards and drivers.
The source said that workers must have valid work contracts stamped by the chamber of commerce in their city of residence. Citizens would be fined for employing foreign workers not under their sponsorship.
In addition, foreign workers found working on their own, with the approval and authorization of their sponsors, would be regarded as violators. Their sponsors would also be fined.
Foreign workers with driver’s licenses can drive cars regardless of their original profession, the source said.
The government would also fine workers if their iqamas have expired, they do not carry their iqamas or run away from inspectors. There are also penalties for people sheltering pilgrims who overstayed their Haj and Umrah visas.