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Portuguese Criminal (Entry Into Uk)

Volume 526: debated on Thursday 15 April 1954

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why no objection was raised by the officials of his Department to the entry of the Portuguese gunman Justine de Almeida to this country.

No adverse information about this man was available when he was granted leave to land in this country.

Can the hon. Gentleman say why such a case can arise in respect of a man who was very well known, whose criminal record was very lengthy and who had a vicious nature? Is there no possibility at all of having a record of that kind available when such a man arrives?

The police have now been informed by the United States police that Almeida had a long record of convictions for armed robbery in that country. He was finally deported from the United States to Portugal in December, 1953. I understand, further, that he had no criminal record in Portugal and we had no criminal record of him here.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that we spend £4 million a year on the Secret Service? In view of its incapacity to deal with cases of this kind, will he suggest to the Chancellor of the Exchequer that this would be a good case for an economy cut?


asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department the nature of the inquiries being made in respect to the passport of Justine de Almeida, a Portuguese citizen, who recently arrived in this country.

De Almeida produced a passport to the British passport control officer in Lisbon and to the immigration officer, and this was accepted by both officers as valid. Inquiries were subsequently made of the Portuguese authorities, who have confirmed that the passport was in order.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the St. Pancras coroner, who looked into this matter thoroughly, was not satisfied that the visa was in order, in that he suggested that inquiries should be made of the British authorities in Lisbon? Is the hon. Gentleman now saying that the passport is wholly in order so far as the British authorities are concerned?

A visa and a passport are, of course, two separate things. The hon. Member put down a Question about the passport, which I have answered. If he wishes to put a question about the visa, he should put it on the Order Paper.