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Volume 979: debated on Tuesday 19 February 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, further to the written answers to the hon. Member for Grimsby of 12 February, why the numbers of people detained as a result of overstaying for each of the last five years, and the number of Humberside residents who have been detained or removed from the United Kingdom as illegal immigrants or overstayers in each of the last five years, are not available.

The wide variety of circumstances in which detention as an overstayer may occur explains why no central record of the total numbers of people so detained is kept. Information about illegal entrants detained or removed, and about overstayers removed, is not kept by reference to locality and the information requested could be obtained only at disproportionate expense.