(i) In cases involving convictions for an offence for which the person was sentenced to a period of imprisonment of less than 4 years, the Secretary of State’s policy, as expressed in paragraph 391(a) of the Immigration Rules, is that the public interest does not require continuation of a deportation order after a period of ten years has elapsed.
(ii) However, paragraph 391(a) allows the Secretary of State to consider on a case by case basis whether a deportation order should be maintained. The mere fact of past convictions is unlikely to be sufficient to maintain an order if the ‘prescribed period’ has elapsed. Strong public policy reasons would be needed to justify continuing an order in such circumstances.
(iii) Paragraph 391(a) will only be engaged in a ‘post-deportation’ case if the person is applying for revocation of the order from outside the UK. Nothing in the strict wording of the rule requires the ten-year period to be spent outside the UK. However, the main purpose of deportation is to exclude a person from the UK. Any breach of the deportation order is likely to be a strong public policy ground for maintaining the order even though a period of ten years has elapsed since it was made.
(iv) In ‘post-deportation’ applications involving sentences of less than four years made before the end of the ten-year period, and ‘post-deportation’ applications involving sentences of four years or more, appropriate weight should be given to the Secretary of State’s policy as expressed in the ‘Conventions exception’ and ‘sweep-up exception’ with reference to paragraphs 398-399A and 390A of the Immigration Rules.