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Albanian/Kosovar deprived of British citizenship by Presenting Officer

Albanian/Kosovar deprived of British citizenship by Presenting Officer

In an unusually dramatic move, the Presenting Officer in the recent case of KB (para: 320(7A): “false representations”) Albania [2009] UKAIT 00043 served a section 40 notice on a witness in the case, thereby depriving him of his British citizenship. There is a right of appeal to the tribunal against such a decision and the tribunal records that it advised the unrepresented man to seek legal advice.

This was a case where the witness, who was sponsoring his wife to enter the UK from Albania, had claimed on arrival in the UK in 1999 to be a Kosovar. However, the tribunal records in the determination that the man was a national of Albania, although it is not clear how this was established. The Home Office accused him of lying about his nationality on entry and then continuing with the lie to obtain Exceptional Leave to Remain, then Indefinite Leave to Remain and then finally full British citizenship.

The tribunal, chaired by Mr Ockelton, found that a document obtained through falsehood and relied on in an immigration application does amount to a ‘false representation’ under immigration rule 320(7A) and therefore mandates refusal of the application and appeal. The tribunal goes on to comment that sometimes leave and even citizenship is appears to be granted when it should not have been, as well as the more usual complaint of not being granted when it should have been, before ending by observing that the Presenting Officer in court served the witness with a notice under s.40 of the British Nationality Act 1981:

Before us, Ms Tanner served on the sponsor a Notice of Decision under s40 of the British Nationality Act 1981, depriving the sponsor of his citizenship. We advised the sponsor to seek legal assistance in connection with it.

The case serves as a warning to any Albanian/Kosovans that should they by their actions cast doubt upon the basis on which they were granted ILR or citizenship — such as by sponsoring an Albanian spouse to enter the UK and presenting an Albanian passport — they are opening themselves to potential curtailment or deprivation proceedings.

Free Movement

The Free Movement blog was founded in 2007 by Colin Yeo, a barrister at Garden Court Chambers specialising in immigration law. The blog provides updates and commentary on immigration and asylum law by a variety of authors.

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