Yaqub Ahmed’s Deportation Saga Ends, Costing Taxpayers Over £1 Million in Legal and Accommodation Expenses
In a contentious turn of events, Yaqub Ahmed, a 34-year-old Somalian gang rapist, has finally been deported to Somalia, concluding a prolonged and expensive legal battle. His deportation in August, aboard a chartered plane, came after a series of failed attempts and substantial taxpayer expense.
Ahmed, who was convicted in 2008 for his role in a heinous attack on a 16-year-old girl in London, has remained a contentious figure in the UK’s immigration and legal system. In an extraordinary act of public intervention in 2018, passengers on a Turkish Airlines flight at Heathrow, unaware of his criminal background, successfully prevented his deportation. A video of the incident, showing passengers applauding Ahmed’s removal from the plane, sparked widespread debate over the UK’s deportation policies.
The saga, which saw interventions from six successive Home Secretaries, including Theresa May and recently sacked Suella Braverman, has highlighted significant challenges in the UK’s legal and immigration system. The case has been marred by multiple legal challenges, including three judicial review claims, and lengthy court proceedings that escalated to the Court of Appeal.
Critics have pointed out the substantial costs incurred by taxpayers due to Ahmed’s extended stay in the UK. Reports from The Mail on Sunday estimate these costs, including legal fees, prison, and deportation expenses, to be upwards of £1 million. Furthermore, his deportation package reportedly included a 14-week luxury hotel stay and a comprehensive care package, comprising mental health medication and psychological services in Mogadishu.
The victim of Ahmed’s 2008 crime has openly criticized the UK’s justice system, describing the case as “absolutely shocking” and a mockery of fairness. The case also raises questions about the balance of human rights considerations in the legal process, with the victim expressing frustration over her rights being seemingly overshadowed by those of her attacker.
In response to growing criticisms, a Home Office spokesman emphasised the complexities involved in deporting foreign national offenders, stating that occasional support packages are necessary to ensure court agreement for deportation.
The Home Office also highlighted its ongoing efforts in removing foreign criminals, with over 14,700 deportations between January 2019 and March this year. However, this case underscores the need for a more efficient and less costly deportation process, particularly in high-profile cases involving serious criminal offences. Story Source