Doughty - Brexit to make deporting over 1,000 criminals every year harder for UK police - People's Vote

Doughty - Brexit to make deporting over 1,000 criminals every year harder for UK police

Brexit would make it harder for UK police to deport over 1,000 criminals each year, figures published by the National Crime Agency (NCA) show.

On the day that the Director-General of National Crime Agency, Lynne Owens, warns of the risk a disorderly Brexit poses to fighting crime, the People’s Vote campaign warn that any sort of Brexit would damage the battle against crime and terrorism by reducing the ability to secure the arrest of criminals overseas and to secure the intelligence needed to identify criminals operating on British shores.

The European Arrest Warrant (EAW), an information sharing system that allows police forces to issue notices for the arrest of known criminals that apply in countries across Europe, is only available to EU member states. This means that the UK’s participation in the scheme is at risk under current Brexit plans.

If Brexit happens on 29 March then by 30 March Britain may find itself having a special attraction to the continent’s organised criminals.

The NCA figures show that the EAW is used routinely to deport over 1,000 criminals from the UK each year, with the latest figures showing 1,164 deportations in 2017. Since records began, 9,646 criminals were deported from Britain using the EAW.

The top regions from which people are deported, according to the NCA figures, are London, the West Midlands, and the South East.

The figures further show that the top reasons people are deported under the EAW include drugs trafficking, child sex offences, fraud and rape.

The figures also show that the EAW is used to bring over one hundred criminals back to the UK to face justice each year. UK police recently issued an EAW for Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, who are wanted by authorities for the alleged poisoning of Sergej and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury.

But the European Arrest Warrant is only available to EU member states, meaning Britain would lose access to the helpful scheme as a result of a chaotic and botched Brexit.

During the 2016 EU referendum campaign, Vote Leave claimed that leaving the EU is “the safer option”.

Nobody was told then that Brexit would make it harder for UK police to deport known criminals. As more and more facts about Brexit come to light every day, people across the country are calling for a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal.

Commenting, Stephen Doughty MP, leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign and member of the Home Affairs select committee, said:

“Nobody was told in 2016 that Brexit would make it harder for our police forces to deport known criminals. Losing access to this vital data sharing scheme would put communities across Britain at risk.

“Vote Leave claimed that Brexit would be ‘the safer option’, but in reality our police will find it more difficult to identify and track down those who want to harm us.

“The Home Office is already in chaos - having wrongly deported and detained individuals from the Windrush generation. We could now find it ironically harder to deport the criminals and individuals who are the real threat to our country. Brexit will just compound the shambles.”

“Every day we see more evidence of how damaging and irresponsible this chaotic and botched Brexit will be. It’s time to give the country a People’s Vote on the final deal with the EU.”

 

ENDS

 

Notes to editors

The new NCA figures show that the UK has never received more requests under the EAW scheme than in the past year, and that the EAW is routinely used by UK police to surrender over 1,000 criminals to law enforcement agencies in other EU countries for crimes they have committed.

 

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

Total

Requests

2,842

4,369

6,512

6,290

5,522

13,460

12,613

13,797

16,837

82,242

Arrests

732

1,307

1,332

1,331

1,775

1,519

2,041

1,843

1,510

13,390

Surrenders

537

1,038

1,079

1,025

1,126

1,097

1,149

1,431

1,164

9,646

(National Crime Agency, 31 August 2018, link)

The top regions from which criminals were deported under the EAW in 2017 are:

Region

Number of individuals deported under the EAW in 2017

Number of individuals deported under the EAW (2009-2017)

London

301

3298

West Midlands

166

1089

South East

141

1184

Yorkshire and Humber

127

852

North West

111

820

East Midlands

90

794

East of England

52

404

South west

51

458

Scotland

46

164

Northern Ireland

29

242

Wales

27

189

Northumbria

12

80

North East

10

69

(National Crime Agency, 31 August 2018, link)

The top five offences for which criminals were deported under the EAW between 2009 and 2017 were:

Offence

Number of individuals deported under the EAW (2009-2017)

Drugs Trafficking

164

Child Sex Offences

126

Fraud

109

Rape

80

Offences against the person

80

Drugs Offences

77

Grievous Bodily Harm

63

Murder

53

Robbery

36

Armed Robbery

34

Figures exclude the category “other” - (National Crime Agency, 31 August 2018, link)

The European Arrest Warrant is a British success story of fighting crime and bringing persons to justice. Case studies of criminals that were deported from the UK under the EAW include:

  • The issuing of an EAW for Russian agents responsible for Salisbury poisoning. (Express, 5 September 2018, link)
  • A man accused of Stephen Lawrence murder was extradited back from Spain to face charges of large scale drugs supply (The Independent, 4 May 2018, link).
  • A man was deported to Poland from the North West for possession of a firearm (Liverpool Echo, 2 August 2017, link)
  • A rapist was deported to the Czech Republic to face justice (Liverpool Echo, 2 August 2017, link)

 

The NCA figures also show that UK police bring back over one hundred criminals to face justice in Britain each year under the European Arrest Warrant scheme.

 

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

Total

Requests

179

252

226

271

219

228

228

348

278

2,229

Arrests

99

141

151

148

170

156

150

195

201

1,411

Surrenders

76

133

136

136

127

145

123

162

183

1,221

(National Crime Agency, 31 August 2018, link)

In the 2016 referendum campaign, Vote Leave claimed that leaving the EU is the “safer option” (Vote Leave, accessed 10 September 2018, link).