Immigrant loses latest bid to stay

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Published: Friday 13th February 2015 by The News Editor

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A 40-year-old illegal immigrant has lost the latest round of his fight to stay in the UK – nearly 18 years after being told he had no right to remain.

The man arrived in Britain from India in June 1997 and claimed asylum, judges heard.

His claim was refused and in November 1997 he was served with “formal notification” that he was “liable to be removed”.

But he remained – and met a partner, had children, bought a house, worked in construction and as a lorry driver, and launched a legal battle.

At one stage Home Office immigration officials had taken more than six years to deal with his “application for indefinite leave to remain”, judges were told.

Detail of the man’s case emerged in a ruling by the Court of Appeal.

Three judges dismissed his latest appeal – following a hearing in London – after being told that he had claimed his human right to respect for family life had been breached when he was not allowed to stay.

The man’s history was outlined by appeal judge Lord Justice Underhill – who named him only as “Mr Singh” – in a written ruling.

“Mr Singh is aged 40 and is an Indian national,” said Lord Justice Underhill.

“He came to this country on 15 June 1997, when he was 22, and claimed asylum.

“His claim was refused, and on 1 November 1997 he was served with formal notification that he was liable to be removed.

“He has remained here illegally ever since.”

Lord Justice Underhill said that, in March 2006, the man applied for “indefinite leave to remain” under an immigration rule known as the “10 years’ continuous lawful residence provision” – and under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which enshrines the right to respect to family and private life.

That application was not dealt with by the UK Border Agency until October 2012, said Lord Justice Underhill.

Officials then refused the application – saying the man’s residence had “not been lawful”.

The man, whose partner travelled to the UK on a visitor’s visa and was an “overstayer”, then appealed to an immigration tribunal.

That appeal was dismissed by a judge in January 2013.

The man then appealed to a higher-ranking tribunal – and that appeal was dismissed by another judge.

The man then took his case to the Court of Appeal.

His claims were analysed by appeal judges Lady Justice Arden, Lord Justice Lewison and Lord Justice Underhill at a hearing in November 2014.

They have also now ruled against him.

Lord Justice Underhill described the case, on one basis, as “straightforward” and said the man had no claim under Article 8.

Published: Friday 13th February 2015 by The News Editor

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