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Immigration (John and Stella Park)

Volume 480: debated on Monday 6 October 2008

The Petition of residents of Teesside and others,

Declares the Petitioners' serious concerns about the possible deportation of John and Stella Park (Home Office Reference Number K2218457) to the Republic of Korea with their mother.

The Petitioners' further declare that John and Stella (aged 14 and 16 years) are two brilliantly talented young musicians. They are in the process of completing their education at Yarm School.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Secretary of State for the Home Department to use her powers to prevent John and Stella's removal from the UK taking place, at least until they have been able to finish their school education.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Ms Dari Taylor, Official Report, 7 July 2008; Vol. 478, c. 1255 .] [P000229]

Observations from the Secretary of State for the Home Department, received 24 September 2008:

To maintain effective immigration control, the United Kingdom Border Agency must remove from the country foreign nationals whose leave to remain here has expired. Should they wish to stay in the United Kingdom to study, such persons ought to apply for entry clearance from abroad to enter the country properly under the Immigration Rules. To grant leave to remain to such people before they have applied for entry clearance provides them with an advantage over those who comply with the law.

Foreign nationals who have been refused leave to remain on the basis of their studies may appeal to an immigration judge. When considering an appeal, a judge has regard to the appellant’s rights, and that of their dependents, to private life (including education) in the United Kingdom enshrined in Article 8 of the Human Rights Act 1998. In doing so, a judge will determine whether the interference, caused by the appellant’s removal, with the appellant’s private life is proportionate to the aim of achieving immigration control.

The child of a student would be expected to leave with the parent on completion of the parent’s studies. Discretion can be given for a short period only, and leave granted outside the rules to enable a child to sit exams or complete the school year rather than be required to leave shortly before an important examination.

The United Kingdom Border Agency, and immigration judges, when deciding whether or not a person’s rights under Article 8 will be breached by their removal, will have regard to the relevant circumstances to which he or she will be returned. Furthermore, their opportunity to apply for entry clearance to enter this country to resume their private life here is also considered.

To protect the privacy of the individuals, the Government is unable to comment on the details of the case.