A week after Ukip’s rising youth star quit the party, accusing the leader of racism as a departing shot, Nigel Farage’s clan find themselves once again besieged by controversy, with the party’s small business spokesman accused of hypocrisy over revelations that seven people were arrested for immigration offences during a raid on his Manchester restaurant in 2013.
The premises of Ukip’s European election candidate Amjad Bashir were raided in June last year, according to The Times; three days after the raid, Bashir quit as director of the company that owns the Zouk Tea Bar and Grill, though he remains a shareholder and has continued to oversee its running.
Bashir, who set up the restaurant with his two sons Tayub and Mudassar, has denied any wrongdoing, while Farage has refused to comment as not to prejudice the case.
According to the Home Office, seven people were arrested during the raid for "immigration offences" however Tayub Bashir told the newspaper that the family were appealing the decision, adding that immigration checks were routinely carried out on restaurant staff.
Speaking on BBC's This Week, Farage said: "His son is the director and runs that business and they had an argument and a row with the immigration people, which they are appealing. I'm not going to prejudge that."
However, Liberal Democrat MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber Edward McMillan-Scott told The Times: "Forget the obvious hypocrisy; employing illegal immigrants is exploitative and against the law."
The 61-year-old Bashir is on a list of candidates for Yorkshire and Humberside in the forthcoming European elections.