Foreign criminals to be deported before appeal, says Theresa May

The UK government will do whatever is necessary to deport dangerous foreigners, Home Secretary Theresa May has said.

Addressing the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester Ms. May said the next party’s “manifesto will promise to scrap the Human Rights Act.”

She said the Conservative Party’s position is clear: “If leaving the European Convention is what it takes to fix our human rights laws, that is what we should do.”

Ms. May confirmed that the Immigration Bill to be published soon “will make it easier to get rid of people with no right to be here.”

She announced that they’ll cut the number of appeal rights. “At the moment, the system is like a never-ending game of snakes and ladders, with almost 70,000 appeals heard every year. The winners are foreign criminals and immigration lawyers – while the losers are the victims of these crimes and the public. So we’re going to cut the number of appeal rights from seventeen to four, and in doing so cut the total number of appeals by more than half.”  

Observing that human rights were cited in almost 10,000 immigration appeal cases last year, Ms. May said they’ll extend the number of non-suspensive appeals. “This means that where there is no risk of serious and irreversible harm, we should deport foreign criminals first and hear their appeal later,” she said.  

The third thing to be sorted out by the Immigration Bill is “the abuse of Article Eight – the right to a family life,” Ms. May said. “The trouble is, while the European Convention makes clear that a right to a family life is not absolute, judges often treat it as an unqualified right.”  

The Home Secretary claimed that cutting immigration was “a simple question of fairness.”

Uncontrolled immigration doesn’t affect the rich but the poor who work hard for a modest wage, Ms. May said. “They’re the people who live in communities that struggle to deal with sudden social changes, who rely on public services that can’t cope with demand, who lose out on jobs and have their wages forced down when immigration is too high. That’s why we’re cutting immigration across the board,” she said.

Praising the government’s successful actions to cut immigration, Ms. May said: “Work visas are down by seven per cent. Family visas are down by a third. And student visas – which were abused on an industrial scale under Labour – are also down by a third. Many of these people weren’t students at all – such was the scale of abuse under Labour, we’ve cut the number of student visas issued each year by more than 115,000.”  

Ms. May added that since 2010, immigration has been reduced by almost a fifth and net migration reduced by a third.

The Home Secretary described as “an even bigger achievement” the government’s decision to introduce immigration bonds. “It’s a simple idea – the government should be able to take a £3,000 deposit from temporary migrants and return it when they leave. If they overstay their visa, they’ll lose their money,” she said.

Ms. May warned Ed Miliband, the leader of Labour Party that the British people will never vote for him if his party increases immigration.

“The British people want less immigration – and that’s exactly what this Government is delivering,” Ms. May said.

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