THE Home Secretary’s decision to deport a convicted drug dealer was blocked by the High Court today after hearing of his son’s behavioural problems.

A judge ruled that the man, who was due to be removed to Jamaica, was entitled to make a fresh application for permission to stay in the UK on the basis that he was a “reformed” crack cocaine addict.

Mr Justice Collins, sitting at the High Court in London, also said there had been a failure by the Home Office to grapple with evidence of the adverse effect deportation could have on his nine-year-old son, who suffers from attention deficit hyperactive disorder.

The judge said the boy, who must not be identified for legal reasons, had been described by his north London school as “one of the vulnerable group of black Caribbean boys” for whom absentee fathers was one of the main causes of educational weakness.

The Home Office said the Jamaican was previously involved in the running of a crack house, selling cocaine to feed his own habit” and his removal would be “conducive to the public good”.

He had a history of violence and drug involvement and he had brought deportation on himself through his criminal activities.

The Home Office said the public interest in deporting him outweighed his family rights under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

An immigration judge rejected his appeal against deportation in 2006.

But today Mr Justice Collins ruled the Home Office had wrongly rejected his application to bring a fresh human rights claim to be allowed to stay with his family in the UK.

The judge said the fresh claim was based on Parole Board reports not seen by the immigration judge that showed he had “learned his lesson”, was in employment and no longer involved in drugs.

The judge said: “This is material that indicates that it should have been treated as a fresh claim.”

The judge added that expert medical evidence also not properly considered backed the concerns of his son’s north London school over the negative effect removing his father could have on his development.

The judge said: “There is very positive evidence from psychotherapists that there would be an adverse effect in this case.”

Before giving his ruling, the judge said he was worried that there might be “a political end” in the moves to deport the father.

He said: “We all know the Government has been saying that anyone convicted of the most serious offences will be out.

“If that has in any way been in the background it is clearly wrong.

Lisa Busch, for the Home Office, said there was “nothing whatsoever in the decision letters” to indicate that it had been.

The father entered the UK in March 1997 as a visitor but was granted indefinite leave to remain in September 2000 because of his marriage to the mother of his son.

He received a number of criminal convictions. In June 2001 he was fined for possessing Class A drugs, and in November 2005 received a community punishment order for assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

In November 2002, he was fined for possessing Class B drugs, and in April 2003 convicted of failing to surrender to bail and custody, receiving a fine which he never paid.

Finally, in June 2003, he was jailed for five years for possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply and an imitation firearm – a cigarette lighter shaped like a gun.

A decision to deport him was made in June 2005 – on the basis that it would be “conducive to the public good” – and upheld by an immigration judge in August 2006.

The judge refused to adjourn the case to consider submissions over his son’s behavioural problems and evidence that he had made successful efforts to avoid drugs, find employment and turn his life around.

The immigration judge ruled there was nothing to prevent his wife and son from joining him in Jamaica, and the public interest in the father being deported outweighed the compassionate circumstances of his case.

Lawyers for the father made an application to the Home Office immigration authorities for permission to bring a fresh human rights claim, pointing to reports that said he presented “a low risk of re-offending”.

Refusing to treat the application as a fresh claim, the Home Office replied that it could also be argued that he “had no regard for the criminal laws of the UK”.

The Home Office had claimed it was through engaging in drug crime and his own actions that he was an absentee father and jeopardised his right to remain in the UK. Any disruption of his family life was also the result of his own actions.

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