Section 72: Serious criminal
198.Article 33(1) of the Refugee Convention. prevents a refugee being returned to a place where their life or freedom is threatened. Article 33(1) does not apply where the refugee has been convicted of a particularly serious crime and is a danger to the community, by virtue of Article 33(2). The section provides that where a person is convicted in the United Kingdom of an offence and sentenced to a period of imprisonment of at least two years, or of an offence specified by order made by the Secretary of State, he will be presumed to have been convicted of a particularly serious crime and to be a danger to the community. Provision is made for convictions for offences outside the United Kingdom. A person may rebut the presumption that they have committed a particularly serious crime and are a danger to the community.
199.Subsection (8) provides that the dangers a person may face if removed are not relevant to a consideration of whether the Article 33(2) presumption established by this section applies. Subsection (10) provides that where the Secretary of State has issued a certificate that the presumption applies an adjudicator, the Tribunal or the Special Immigration Appeals Commission must begin its substantive consideration of an appeal by looking at the certificate. If the appellate body agrees that the presumptions apply, having given opportunity for rebuttal, it must dismiss that part of the appeal which relates to removal being contrary to the Refugee Convention.
Section 73: Family
200.Under paragraphs 8 to 10 of Schedule 2 to the 1971 Act, directions may be given for the removal of persons refused leave to enter the United Kingdom and illegal entrants. Subsection (1) allows removal directions to be given for the children of such people where those children were born in the United Kingdom.
201.An equivalent power already exists under section 10(1)(c) of the 1999 Act in respect of children born in the United Kingdom whose parents have remained beyond their leave, breached the conditions of their leave or obtained leave to remain by deception.
202.Subsections (2) to (4) make minor amendments in relation to the existing provisions of section 10 of the 1999 Act.
Section 74: Deception
203.Under section 10(1)(b) of the 1999 Act, there is a power to remove immigration offenders who have obtained leave to remain by deception. Section 74 creates a power to remove people whose deception is discovered before leave is granted. (People who seek to obtain leave to remain by deception and people who succeed in doing so both commit an offence under section 24A(1)(a) of the 1971 Act.)
Section 75: Exemption from deportation
204.Under section 7(1)(a) of the 1971 Act Commonwealth citizens or citizens of the Republic of Ireland cannot be deported on grounds of the public good if they: (a) were Commonwealth or Republic of Ireland citizens on 1st January 1973 (the date of the coming into force of the 1971 Act); (b) were ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom at that time; and (c) have been ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom ever since.
205.Under section 7(1)(b) of 1971 Act Commonwealth citizens and citizens of the Republic of Ireland cannot be deported if they were ordinarily resident here on 1 January 1973 and have been ordinarily resident here for the 5 years prior to a decision to make a deportation order. Clearly, someone who has been ordinarily resident here at all times since 1 January 1973 has also been resident here for 5 years before the decision to deport. Subsection (2) therefore repeals section 7(1)(a) of the 1971 Act which is redundant.
206.Subsection (3) replaces section 7(1)(b) of the 1971 Act.
Section 76: Revocation of leave to enter or remain
207.Section 76 gives the Secretary of State power to revoke a person’s indefinite leave to enter or remain in certain specified circumstances.
208.Subsection (1) allows the Secretary of State to revoke indefinite leave where the person is liable to deportation but the person cannot be deported for legal reasons. An example of how this power might be used would be where a person has committed a serious criminal offence such that their deportation would be conducive to the public good but where they cannot be deported to their country of origin because removal would be contrary to Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
209.Subsection (2) allows the Secretary of State to revoke the indefinite leave of persons who are liable to removal on the grounds that they obtained the leave by deception, but who cannot be removed for legal or practical reasons. Practical obstacles such as difficulty in establishing nationality or the lack of a safe route of return can prevent removal.
210.Subsection (3) allows the Secretary of State to revoke the indefinite leave of a person and that person’s dependants in certain cases where a person is no longer a refugee – for example, by accepting the protection of the country of their nationality or establishing themselves in that country.. As those concerned will no longer require the protection of the United Kingdom, subsection (7) allows for administrative removal by amending section 10(1) of the 1999 Act.
211.Subsections (5) and (6) provide that leave granted before the power comes into force may be revoked. In relation to subsections (1) and (2) but not (3) leave may also be revoked where the action which triggers revocation occurs before the power comes into force.
Section 77: No removal while claim for asylum pending
212.Section 77 replaces section 15 of the 1999 Act which provides that an asylum claimant may not be removed from or required to leave the United Kingdom before notice of the Secretary of State's decision on the claim is given. The new section only prohibits removals in accordance with a provision in the Immigration Acts, and subsection (4) allows removal directions or a deportation order to be given and other interim or preparatory action to be taken before notice of a decision on the claim has been given.
Section 78: No removal while appeal pending
213.Section 78 makes provision equivalent to that in Schedule 4 of the 1999 Act, which states that a person may not be removed from or required to leave the United Kingdom while he is in the country and his appeal is pending, as defined in section 104. Again, this only applies to removal or a requirement to leave under the Immigration Acts, and removal directions may be given or, subject to section 79, a deportation order may be made while the appeal is pending. Subsection (3) also allows other interim or preparatory action to be taken.
Section 79: Deportation order: appeal
214.Section 79 makes provision equivalent to section 63(2) of the 1999 Act and paragraph 18 of Schedule 4 to that Act which prevent a deportation order being made during the period allowed for appealing against the decision to make it or while such an appeal is pending. “Pending” is defined in section 104.
Section 80: Removal of asylum-seeker to third country
215.This provision replaces section 11 of the 1999 Act. The definition of standing arrangements is amended to ensure that any bilateral agreements on asylum returns with Member States outside of the Dublin Convention to which section 11 already applied, also will fall within this provision.