UK Minister Suella Braverman clamps down on ‘crooked’ lawyers
A new Professional Enablers Taskforce in the UK will bring together regulatory bodies, law enforcement teams and government departments to increase enforcement action against lawyers who help migrants exploit the immigration system.
UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman said this week: “Crooked immigration lawyers must be rooted out and brought to justice. While the majority of lawyers act with integrity – we know that some are lying to help illegal migrants game the system. It is not right or fair on those who play by the rules.
“The British people want us to put an end to illegal migration – I am determined to crack down on these immoral lawyers and ‘stop the boats.”
Lawyers found to be coaching migrants on how to remain in the country by fraudulent means could be prosecuted under the UK’s Immigration Act 1971, Section 25, for “Assisting unlawful immigration to the UK” and face a sentence of up to life imprisonment.
The UK Ministry of Justice said law enforcement are working with the taskforce to bring fresh prosecutions against corrupt immigration lawyers who could face up to life in prison for assisting illegal migrants to remain in the country by deception.
The new taskforce has also developed a new training package for frontline staff who work in the immigration system to help them identify and report suspect activity by immigration lawyers.
Working with industry bodies, the taskforce will disrupt the business models of firms that are enabling abuse of the immigration system. Their work is aimed at supporting enforcement action against corrupt lawyers by building stronger evidence and improving intelligence sharing, which is then passed on to industry bodies to investigate and bring to law enforcement for prosecution if necessary, the Ministry of Justice said.
It revealed that the taskforce has already uncovered a case in which an immigration firm is linked to one of the most wanted human traffickers, which has now been referred to the police.