After spending 28 years in UK, Nigerian man deported for dealing in drug

After spending 28 years in UK, Nigerian man deported for dealing in drug

- A Nigerian man Ifeanyi Chukwu Ndidi has been deported from UK over drug related offences

- Ndidi was said to have lived in UK for 28 years before his eventual deportation

- The court revealed that he first got in trouble with the law when he was 12 years old and continued to be throughout his teenage and early adult years

A Nigerian man, Ifeanyi Chukwu Ndidi has been deported for dealing in drug after spending twenty-eight years in the United Kingdom.

According to a report, Ndidi, who had lived in the UK since the age of two, sought to block his deportation by recourse to foreign judges.

Legit.ng gathered that the European Court of Human Rights disappointed would-be headline writers by approving the Secretary of State’s decision to deport Ndidi due to his long and escalating history of criminality.

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Ndidi entered the UK with his family just before his second birthday. He first got in trouble with the law when he was 12 years old, and continued to be throughout his teenage and early adult years. At 18 years old, Ndidi was warned that he could be liable to deportation if he committed further criminal offences.

He did not heed this warning, ultimately pleading guilty to drug dealing in July 2006 and receiving seven years’ detention in a Young Offender Institution. Upon release he was subject to automatic deportation under section 32(5) of the UK Borders Act 2007.

That provision requires the Secretary of State to deport foreign criminals sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment or more, unless removal would breach their Article 8 rights under the European Convention on Human Rights.

During Ndidi’s domestic representations, the Immigration Rules were amended to provide that the deportation of foreign criminals would not be a breach of Article 8 if they were sentenced to four or more years’ imprisonment.

The public interest in deportation would only be outweighed by human rights considerations in “exceptional circumstances”.

At the European Court of Human Rights Ndidi made three key arguments:

Changes to the Immigration Rules in 2012 violated the convention, because the need to show “exceptional circumstances” imposed a higher hurdle than the “proportionality test” under Article 8.

Applying the proportionality test for deportation would breach Ndidi’s Article 8 rights given:

"He had lived in the UK for 28 years; his criminal offences were committed when he was a minor or young adult; he had not reoffended since his release in March 2011; and he had a young son."

Paragraphs 399 and 399A of the 2012 Immigration Rules were discriminatory (violating Article 8 when read with Article 14), because Ndidi had been treated less favourably than a foreign criminal sentenced to less than four years’ detention.

The Immigration rules arguments

Ndidi had not raised the first and third arguments in the UK courts. As such, he had failed to “exhaust domestic remedies” as required by Article 35(1), and therefore the arguments were inadmissible.

He has not been alone this year in failing to raise submissions in the domestic courts. Much like K2, this failure resulted in a lost opportunity to argue a Strasbourg case with potentially general significance for others facing deportation.

In particular, the complaint that the “exceptional circumstances” test in 2012 Immigration Rules applied a higher standard than the Article 8 proportionality test had promise.

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The UK government accepted (and the European court tentatively agreed) that the argument “arguably raised an important point of principle”.

"This serves as a reminder to practitioners to keep Strasbourg in their sights when making submissions for individual claimants in UK courts.

Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that twenty-eight Nigerians were deported from the United Kingdom (UK) for breaching immigration laws in the country.

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Source: Legit.ng

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