Please don’t let him be Jamaican!
Please don’t let him be Jamaican, please don’t let him be Jamaican, was what I was thinking as I read the Daily Mail story sent to me by the Netateer, which began “ A judge cut the sentence of an illegal immigrant and drug dealer yesterday to help him escape deportation”. Jack Doyle and James Slack wrote the story for the U.K daily.
However, he was Jamaican. Of course it shouldn’t matter, it’s just an example of someone doing something wrong, well someone doing a few things wrong and some of those things more than once.
According to the story, the Judge had decided to give a man guilty of dealing drugs an 11-month sentence for his crimes. Why, well if the sentence were more than 12 months the man would face deportation.
The question many are asking is why not deport him? When you hear the backstory as reported by Slack and Doyle, you will understand why. Here’s the very abridged version, a man we’ll call him Miller because that’s his name, overstayed when he first came to the U.K., was deported, came back and was deported again then came back with someone else’s identity and sent for his wife. Arrested for drug dealing he got his day in court. That brings us to that sentence and the explanation from the judge. According to the judge, sending him back to Jamaica would be “devastating”. Although given his record if deported he may not stay in Jamaica long enough to be devastated.
For those Jamaicans with no ambitions to engage in a criminal career on a visit to England this must all seem very wrong. These people may or may not get further than the High Commission and the prescreening process not even getting the chance to be deported once, let alone twice.
The fortunes of those who get deported back to Jamaica from countries such as the U.S. and the U.K. are mixed and deportation is not always about crime, some find it difficult to reconnect and get work others manage and there are a few who don’t stay deported long.
Over the years of living in Jamaica, I have heard of this happening, every so often, I would notice a new person in the district and be told they had been recently deported. After a while, when I noticed they were not around anymore I’d would ask what happened and hear they’d gone back to “foreign”.
With the increasing use of high tech measures, such as fingerprint scanning and iris identification at immigration desks at airports, I sometimes wonder if we’re closer to a time when the legitimate visitor will find it easier to get into the U.S and Europe. It’s clear cases like Miller’s don’t help.
I’m also left wondering if the judge needed to be so concerned about the possibility of Miller being deported, after all just because you get deported doesn’t mean you won’t be back.