ON APPEAL FROM THE UPPER TRIBUNAL (IMMIGRATION AND ASYLUM CHAMBER)
Strand, London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
LORD JUSTICE SALES
| SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT
- and -
The Respondent attended in person and was not represented
Hearing dates: 26th July 2016
Crown Copyright ©
Lord Justice Sales:
"117C Article 8: additional considerations in cases involving foreign criminals
(1) The deportation of foreign criminals is in the public interest.
(2) The more serious the offence committed by a foreign criminal, the greater is the public interest in deportation of the criminal.
(3) In the case of a foreign criminal ("C") who has not been sentenced to a period of imprisonment of four years or more, the public interest requires C's deportation unless Exception 1 or Exception 2 applies.
(4) Exception 1 applies where—
(a) C has been lawfully resident in the United Kingdom for most of C's life,
(b) C is socially and culturally integrated in the United Kingdom, and
(c) there would be very significant obstacles to C's integration into the country to which C is proposed to be deported. …"
i) the burden was on Mr Kamara to demonstrate that there would be very significant obstacles to his integration there, and the use of the word "very" showed that the threshold was a high one ();
ii) it had found that Mr Kamara had no family, familial links or friends in Sierra Leone and Mr Kandola, who represented the Secretary of State at the hearing, accepted that these findings would be evidence to show that there were very significant obstacles to his integration, and "he did not advance any further submissions as to the evidence or any other factors relevant to this requirement" (: that is to say, the entirety of the Secretary of State's case on this requirement turned on her submissions on the factual dispute which the Tribunal had to resolve as to whether Mr Kamara did or did not have family ties in Sierra Leone);
iii) nonetheless, the Tribunal considered at paras. - whether, notwithstanding the lack of relatives in Sierra Leone, there might be other relevant factors such as social or cultural ties of a nature which would provide him with the basis for establishing a private life and thus integration in that country; it reminded itself "that there are many migrants who seek a new life in countries other than their own". The Tribunal found that there were no such factors. Although English is an officially recognised language in Sierra Leone, it is primarily used only for business, government and media purposes, rather than normal day-to-day life. Mr Kamara did not speak any of the local languages, of which there were 23, being languages of the many tribes who live there. Moreover, the Tribunal found that "Sierra Leone is a highly contextualised society, many things in the language are not expressed, instead interpreted through non-verbal cues or cultural norms", with which Mr Kamara would have no familiarity. The Tribunal found that there was no evidence that he would be able to integrate in Sierra Leone within that kind of cultural context.
iv) in addition, the Tribunal attached some weight to the fact that the evidence showed that there were continuing hardships experienced by the population in Sierra Leone in relation to the country's fight against Ebola, which would make it still more difficult for an outsider like Mr Kamara, "with no social, cultural or familial links with the country", to integrate there.
Lord Justice Moore-Bick: