Tuesday 17 September 2019

Court backs deportation of man allegedly the 'main recruiter' of Islamic terrorists in Ireland

The High Court in Dublin
The High Court in Dublin

Tim Healy

The Court of Appeal has upheld a decision allowing the State deport a man allegedly involved with Islamic terrorists to Jordan in 2016.

The State claimed the man is the "foremost organiser and facilitator of travel by extremists prepared to undertake violent action” on behalf of Islamic terrorists and was its “main recruiter” in Ireland.

The man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, denies consulting with extremist leaders outside Ireland, that he represented a threat to national security or recruiting members for Islamic extremist groups.

In 2016 Mr Justice Richard Humphreys dismissed the man's High Court actions aimed at preventing his deportation.

The man was deported shortly afterwards.

His lawyers appealed the High Court's finding that he had not made a valid asylum claim, which was opposed by the State.

In a unanimous decision on Thursday, a three-judge appeal court dismissed the appeal after finding that the man had not made a valid application asylum as he claimed he had. 

The man claimed he was tortured in Jordan during the 1990s due to his political activities and feared being tortured if returned there. He lived in Ireland between 2000 and 2016, on the basis of having an Irish citizen child.

In 2015 the authorities decided not to renew his residency permit because the child wasn't residing in the State.

After being told the State wanted to deport him, the man sought asylum and alleged the Minister for Justice unlawfully refused to make a decision on his application.

The decision to deport him breached his rights under Article 3 of the European Convention of Human Rights, he claimed.

He sought various court orders aimed at setting aside the deportation order and compelling the Minister for Justice to accept his asylum application. 

Giving the Court of Appeal's decision Mr Justice Hogan that the appeal could not be brought under the 2000 Illegal Immigrants Act.

This was because in 2000 the man had withdrawn his application for asylum in Ireland, and his application had not been refused by the minister. 

The court also said the appeal amounted to "a collateral attack on an administrative decision by the minister" which could only be challenged by way of judicial review proceedings brought under the 2000 Act.

It was for this reason that the man could not make a claim that he had made a valid asylum claim in the absence of a direct challenge brought, under the 2000 Act, against the Minister's decision of June 2015 refusing his re-entry into the asylum system. 

In all the circumstances the court was satisfied to affirm the decision of the High Court.

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