Immigration Detainees Held in Jails ‘Blocked From Accessing Legal Advice’

London: Hundreds of immigration detainees who are being held in jails after completing their prison sentences are unable to access legal advice during the pandemic, lawyers and charities have warned. The government is being urged to release people who are being held in prisons under immigration powers, with the warning that it is “impossible” for the detainees to access legal advice because legal visits are no longer permitted.

Non-British nationals who are sentenced to jail for longer than 12 months in the UK are liable to be deported, and can be detained under immigration powers at the end of their custodial sentence pending their removal from the country. Such individuals are usually transferred to an immigration removal centre, where conditions are less restrictive and they have better access to legal advice. However, since the start of the pandemic, the Home Office has sought to hold fewer people in removal centres for Covid-19 safety reasons, placing many in prisons instead.

Read More: May Bulman, Indpendent,

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