A High Court judge has slammed the government policy of speedy deportation of foreign nationals denied permission to remain in United Kingdom.
The Home Office policy allows for all denied foreign nationals to pack their bags and baggage withins 72 hours to leave United Kingdom.
But Hon Justice Steven Robert Silber said the rush tantamount to denial of Justice.
The Judge ruled that the policy meant people were being given “little or no notice” of removal and deprived of access to justice.
It is a general Home Office practice of giving those facing deportation 72 hours notice of removal directions.
The recent legal challenge was triggered by an “exceptions policy”, introduced by the Government in March 2007 and widened in January this year.
It created categories in which an individual could be given little or no notice.
The decision has been viewed as a victory for Medical Justice in the country which provides independent medical and legal advice to detainees in immigration removal centres.
Dinah Rose QC, appearing in court for Medical Justice, had painted an unpleasant action by UK Border Agency whose officers had used the policy to swoop on victims especially very late at night and escort people to flights leaving no chance for consoles.
Distressed individuals were deprived of the chance to speak to a lawyer and, if so advised, launch last-ditch challenges against removal.
Home Office lawyers argued at a hearing at London’s High Court last month that the exceptions policy was “sufficiently flexible” to ensure there were no human rights breaches.
They said detainees were given as much notice as possible and safeguards had been put in place.
But Mr Justice Silber has now rejected the Home Office case.
He said the new policy failed to ensure that those who received reduced periods of notice were able to obtain legal advice before they were removed.
The judge declared: “The policy is unlawful and must be quashed.”
The judgement has however setback the government’s decision to embarked on a major UK immigration control through fast deportation of failed asylum seekers and unsuccessful applicants seeking residential permit and stay in the United Kingdom.
The Home Office has said it is “disappointed” with the decision, and will be appealing it.