Upper Tribunal Appeal Number:
Immigration and Asylum Chamber AA/06662/2013
THE IMMIGRATION ACTS
Heard at Field House
On 25 November 2013
On 6 December 2013
Secretary of State for the Home Department
Determination and Reasons
For the Appellant: Ms S Jegarajah, Counsel
For the Respondent: Mr G Saunders, Home Office Presenting Officer
1. On 10 September 2013 permission to appeal was granted to the Secretary of State in respect of her challenge to the determination of First-tier Tribunal Judge Lawrence. To avoid any errors I refer to R S as the applicant.
2. The applicant is a Sri Lankan national of Tamil ethnicity born on 17 July 1987. He initially entered the UK as a student and claimed asylum after a recent visit to Colombo during which he claimed to have been detained and tortured. His appeal was allowed by First-tier Tribunal Judge Lawrence who found him credible and concluded he would be at risk on return as he would be perceived as a threat to the security of the state on account of the activities he confessed to under torture. The Secretary of State challenged the determination on the basis that GJ and Others (post-civil war: returnees) Sri Lanka CG  UKUT 319 (IAC) had not been properly applied.
3. At the hearing before me on 25 November, Mr Saunders submitted that the applicant did not fall into one of the risk categories set out in GJ although he accepted that the list was not exhaustive.
4. In response, Ms Jegarajah pointed to various sections of the interview record where the applicant gave evidence that under torture he had confessed to involvement with the LTTE both in Sri Lanka and in the UK and that he had also confessed to the transportation of weapons for them. On that basis the judge had found that he would be perceived as a security risk and his application of GJ to the findings of fact was as it should be.
5. At the conclusion of the hearing I upheld the determination of the judge and I now give my reasons for so doing.
6. Had the Secretary of State challenged the credibility findings of the First-tier Tribunal Judge then she may have had a case to argue. However, as the findings were accepted, it is difficult to see how she could maintain that the applicant, who was recently arrested, detained, tortured and who confessed to all kinds of accusations put to him, would not be seen as a threat to the security of the state on his return. It was also accepted that release upon payment of a bribe was not indicative of a lack of interest on the part of the authorities.
7. Having reached positive credibility findings, the judge properly considered GJ (at paragraphs 26, 29, 32 and 33). In the context of his unchallenged factual findings, he was entitled to find that the applicant had been interrogated in January 2013 on the basis of intelligence received that he had participated in assisting the LTTE with transporting weapons and that he would be suspected of involvement in the resurgence of the LTTE. His finding that the appellant faced a real risk of persecution on return was one open to him on the evidence and was properly made in accordance with country guidance. No error of law has been established.
8. The First-tier Tribunal did not make any errors of law. The appeal of the Secretary of State is dismissed and Judge Lawrence’s determination allowing the applicant’s appeal is upheld.
Dr R Kekić
Judge of the Upper Tribunal
25 November 2013