27 Oct 2015

Ag contractor warns over Irish recruiter

4:04 pm on 27 October 2015

An agricultural contractor is warning others looking to employ workers from Britain to be wary of a recruiter after organising two people who have not arrived in New Zealand to work.

Samuel Thomas, who part owns Martinborough-based agricultural contracting company Pakohe Agriculture, said the harvesting season was under way and he looked to overseas workers to help with the busy workload.

They used a recruitment agent based in Ireland, who was mucking both him and the two workers around.

Communication with the man had been on and off, and he started to get a funny feeling something was not right.

"No contact over the weekend. I called him Monday no answer, Tuesday no answer.

"It's been two weeks now and I haven't heard from him. I tried him several times, day in, day out, for probably five days and didn't get any response.

"I actually can't get hold of the guys that were supposed to be coming out here now, either, so whether or not they were made up not, I'm not sure."

Mr Thomas and his father had been left shouldering all the work because the two workers had not shown up, he said.

"We've got a couple of casuals coming in, plus a couple of other guys that have given us a hand for a number of years.

"This guy guaranteed me that they'd be here at the beginning of October and it was two weeks in before he'd even rung me.

"It's all new to me, I haven't gone this way before for employing people."

Mr Thomas said he had alerted Rural Contractors New Zealand about the recruiter.