Only a small number of the illegal workers arrested as part of the government crackdown at the 2012 Olympic Games Park were actually working on the site, the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) has insisted.
It emerged today that more than 90 people had been arrested by the UK Border Agency (UKBA), with a total of 85 involving suspected immigration offences. More than 40 had used fake passports or other documents to gain unlawful employment, and a number have been removed from the UK.
An ODA spokesperson said: "Media reports today give the impression that the UKBA has removed people working illegally on the Olympic Park.
"In the vast majority of cases, those arrested have not done a minute's work on the park. They have been arrested before setting foot on the site through the screening checks set up for all potential workers.
"UKBA have been on site for almost two years checking documentation for workers before they can gain employment on the park. In this way, we make sure that only those legally entitled to work can do so."
Tony Smith, senior director for the agency's Olympic 2012 programme, said: "We have officers based permanently at the Olympic site to check the identity of people seeking work and help ensure the Games are delivered on time, with a workforce legally entitled to be there."