The Court of Appeal recently considered the case of The Secretary of State for the Home Department v JZ (Zambia)  EWCA Civ 116 (01 March 2016). The case concerned a Zambian national who had received a Home Office deportation decision as a foreign criminal. The individual appealed against that decision, relying on article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The First-tier Tribunal allowed appeal in favour of the Zambian national as did the Upper Tribunal. The Home Office then appealed to the Court of Appeal. We consider the case in detail below.
The deportation case concerned a Zambian national born who was born and raised in Zimbabwe. His mother is a Zambian national of Congolese descent and his father was a German national of Lebanese descent.
In 2003 the Zambian national came to the UK with his mother and stepfather. He lived with them and his half siblings, except when he was in prison. In 2010 all of his family obtained Indefinite Leave to Remain. In 2013 his mother, stepfather and half-siblings became British citizens.
In August 2011 he took part in the riots that took place in London. At one stage he hurled a burning plank of wood at the police. His mother who saw the film of the rioting on television recognised her son and reported her own son to the police. This must have been an agonising decision for her, but she did the right thing. On 28 May 2012 at Wood Green Crown Court he pleaded guilty to one count of violent disorder and two counts of arson. He was sentenced to a total of 4½ years’ detention.
The Home Office decided to deport the Zambian national referring to him as a “foreign criminal” and served him with a deportation notice.
The Court of Appeal Deportation Decision
The Judge when making his decision took into account the following:
- the Zambian national’s family had settled in the UK and obtained British citizenship;
- exceptional circumstances;
- the Zambian national’s residence in the UK and his age when committing offences;
The Judge then held:
both the First-tier Tribunal and the Upper Tribunal correctly applied the Immigration Rule…those Tribunals took account of the individual’s Convention rights through the lens of the Immigration Rules. The tribunals concluded, and were entitled to conclude, that exceptional circumstances existed which outweighed the public interest in deporting the individual.
Accordingly the appeal was dismissed in favour of the Zambian national.
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