The Home Office’s deportation flight takes off for Jamaica with just 7 people on board
Deportation flights to Jamaica have proved controversial as some people have lived in the UK since childhood or have Windrush connections
A Home Office deportation flight to Jamaica took off today with just seven of the 112 expected on board.
Tory Minister Tom Pursglove blamed last-minute legal claims for the low number on board the plane in the early hours of Wednesday.
Deportation flights to Jamaica have proved controversial as some people have lived in Britain since childhood or have ties to the Windrush generation who arrived in Britain from Caribbean countries in the 1950s and 60s.
Mr Pursglove said people on the flight committed crimes ranging from sexual assaults against children, firearms offences, drug-related crimes and violent offences.
“This flight to Jamaica represents only 1% of the total forced returns in the year through September 2021,” he said.
“However, many more criminals could have left the UK today. What we have seen in the last 24 hours is more last minute requests facilitated by specialist immigration law firms, as well as stand-ins by MPs to stop this flight from boarding.”
Conservative MP William Wragg asked: “How many dangerous foreign offenders should be on the deportation flight this morning and how many actually left on appeals?”
Mr Pursglove replied: “I can confirm that the manifesto originally contained 112 people, in the end only seven left our country on that flight.”
Tory backbench Peter Bone was heard exclaiming: “How many? Seven?”
Shadow Home Office Minister Stephen Kinnock said: “The Home Office must deport dangerous foreign criminals who have no right to be in our country and who should be returned to their country of citizenship.”
He added: “But the Home Office also has a responsibility to get its deportation decisions right.”
Conservative MPs lined up to criticize the opposition, claiming Labor and the SNP had backed “left-wing” immigration lawyers to the British public.
Mediadrumimages / Tom Marshall)
Stoke-on-Trent North MP Jonathan Gullis claimed his constituents were “stunned that the woke, wet and shaky lot opposite are siding with their left-wing woke warriors who are making sure these rapists and pedophiles are in this stay in the United Kingdom instead of standing up for the British people and their security”.
But the SNP’s Anne McLaughlin later said: ‘Can I say how disrespectful I find it that the members of these banks keep talking about lawyers who, after all, only protect people under the laws of this country?
“It’s extremely childish when every time we mention it we just hear ‘left-wing lawyers, left-wing lawyers.’
“Who cares what their policy is? They protect people under the law.”
Mr Pursglove replied: “I think of course it is right and proper for people to have access to legal advice and of course the legal profession and due process is absolutely crucial to ensure these matters are dealt with sensitively, fairly and correctly law, but what we can no longer have is this totally unbalanced situation where we see abuse of the system.”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/home-office-deportation-flight-takes-27000082 The Home Office's deportation flight takes off for Jamaica with just 7 people on board