Foreign crooks will not be able to use slavery or trafficking as reason to remain in UK under new proposal
Foreign criminals will no longer be able to claim to be victims of trafficking after arriving in the UK under legislation laid out by the Home Secretary today.
Offenders will be prevented from accessing protections that stop authorities removing them from the country under reforms to the Nationality and Borders Act.
The claim threshold will also be raised to ensure case workers look for objective evidence of trafficking or slavery rather than mere suspicion.
Suella Braverman said that the changes will help prevent false claims of modern slavery and allow officials to focus on genuine victims.
Suella Braverman said that the changes will help prevent false claims of modern slavery and allow officials to focus on genuine victims
The Home Secretary said: ‘We must stop people exploiting our immigration and asylum laws. And I am personally determined to crack down on those abusing the generosity of the British public and taking our country for a ride.
‘It is totally unfair that genuine victims of modern slavery may be left waiting longer to receive the protections they need due to the flagrant abuse of the system.
‘The changes coming into force will mean if you’ve committed an offence, we have the power to refuse your protections and kick you out of our country.’
Previously, Foreign National Offenders (FNOs) could delay their potential removal from the UK by claiming they were a victim of modern slavery.
Any action to deport them would be paused while their claim was considered under protections offered by the National Referral Mechanism (NRM).
This has seen almost a fivefold increase in claims between 2014 and 2021.
Rishi Sunak has pledged to tighten UK modern slavery laws by raising the threshold someone must meet to be considered a modern slave and ‘remove the gold-plating’ in the system
But those FNOs who have been sentenced to 12 months or more or convicted of a serious offence will no longer be granted the initial protections given while a claim is being reviewed.
Case workers will be told to look out for objective evidence of physical or psychological abuse and a referral from the first responder individual or organisation who found them to qualify for NRM protections.
The Home Office cited an example of an FNO convicted of sexual offences committing a further rape after claiming he was a victim of modern slavery and being released on bail.
Rishi Sunak has pledged to tighten UK modern slavery laws by raising the threshold someone must meet to be considered a modern slave and ‘remove the gold-plating’ in the system.