UK immigration case makes use of 'secret evidence'

14 Jun 2013 | Posted by Carl Thomas

A court has been forced to rule on the use of secret evidence before the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC) on a case concerning UK immigration decisions.

The matter revolves around a certain Mr ZZ, an Algerian citizen. However, the individual also has French citizenship, which gives him permission to travel to and live in the UK as a European citizen. His wife is also a UK citizen.

Mr ZZ's problems arose after he travelled to Algeria. He had been resident in the UK for over a decade, but in 2005 left to visit Algeria. After his travels he was refused admission to the country on national security grounds.

A claim was brought to the European Court of Justice regarding the matter. The SIAC upheld the British home secretary's decision to exclude Mr ZZ from the UK, but the secret evidence ruling has meant that the public is unaware of what grounds the exclusion was based on.

This has since been contested by Mr ZZ, who has argued in an appeal that SIAC was in violation of due process rights of EU law, prompting a referral to the European Court of Justice.

The issue concerning secret evidence has made the case a tricky one for the European courts to handle. At the moment, things have been bounced across to the Court of Appeal final resolution, according to the UK Human Rights Blog, but difficulties are ongoing.