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Deportation Flight to Jamaica

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:33 pm on 10th February 2020.

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Photo of Kevin Foster Kevin Foster The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department 3:33 pm, 10th February 2020

Let us start with the review and when it will come. Ultimately, this is an independent review and the timing is in the hands of the reviewer. Ministers cannot compel it to be produced by a particular date. Let us be clear: on the status check, there are no British nationals on that flight. Let us also be clear that the foreign national offenders on the flight have been sentenced to a total of 300 years in prison. As we said, the offences relate to everything from sex offending to serious drug trafficking offences, violent offences and firearms offences. That is what is happening in this instance and, aside from two cases, it is based on legislation passed under a Labour Government, in 2007. To define the Windrush generation by this particular group of offenders is truly wrong. The Windrush generation should be defined by the midwife who delivered hundreds of babies; the person who travelled thousands of miles, worked hard and provided for their family for decades. The line being adopted by the Opposition now is remarkable: that somehow that generation is defined by serious or persistent criminal offenders who are being deported from this country. Many listening to the exchanges this afternoon will think that the Labour party not only lost an election, but lost the plot as well.