West indian countries

Britain could penalize countries that don’t readmit deported felons

The UK Home Secretary has threatened to penalize countries that refuse to readmit criminals and failed asylum seekers who are repatriated from Britain.

Priti Patel said that under proposed changes to the Nationality and Borders Bill, which could be passed this year, people applying from those countries may be forced to wait longer for applications to visa are processed.

This will include the option to suspend visas, impose a surcharge of £ 190 ($ 257) on UK visit requests or extend visa processing times.

She said The Gambia could be the first nation to be affected, having only accepted four criminal returnees in the past 12 months.

Sierra Leone, Eritrea, Cambodia and Vietnam will also face sanctions in response to their cases on accepting deportees.

The hard-line Home Secretary was angered by the foreign prisoners left in British prisons at a significant cost to the taxpayer.

“Countries around the world must work with us to take back their own nationals if they abuse our hospitality by committing crimes,” she said. The sun newspaper on Sunday.

“However, some countries do not cooperate on returns and therefore we will impose visa penalties on countries that refuse to take back criminals.

“We rightly reprimand British citizens who commit crimes abroad and other countries are doing the same.”

Official figures show the UK has 10,882 foreign offenders who have been released from prison but are not returned to their home countries. Ten years ago the figure was 4,000.

More than 6,000 failed asylum seekers receive state welfare benefits, but the Interior Ministry has struggled to deport them due to their countries of origin reluctance to readmit them.

Britain can also waive certain immigration restrictions for Indian citizens.

The move is reportedly being considered by International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan, who will hold trade talks with India this month.

She is reportedly prepared to make an offer to New Delhi that would give Indian citizens a status similar to Australians, who have the right to live and work in Britain for three years.

Visas, which cost around £ 1,400, could be cut to encourage Indians to sign the deal.

Neither the US nor the EU has a trade deal with India, which has a GDP of over $ 2 trillion.

Updated: January 2, 2022, 2:59 PM

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