Khadir, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department: HL 16 Jun 2005

The applicant who had entered England hidden in a lorry, claimed asylum, and had his claim rejected. It was said that as an Iraqi Kurd, he would be safe in the Kurdish area of Iraq. No safe means had been found of ensuring his return over some four years, and there was no immediate prospect of one being found. He now said that he should be granted leave to enter, having been detained all this time.
Held: The appeal was dismissed.
Lord Brown said: ”For my part I have no doubt that Mance LJ was right to recognise a distinction between the circumstances in which a person is potentially liable to detention (and can properly be temporarily admitted) and the circumstances in which the power to detain can in any particular case properly be exercised. It surely goes without saying that the longer the delay in effecting someone’s removal the more difficult will it be to justify his continued detention meanwhile. But that is by no means to say that he does not remain ‘liable to detention’. What I cannot see is how the fact that someone has been temporarily admitted rather than detained can be said to lengthen the period properly to be regarded as ‘pending . . his removal’. . . Pending’ in paragraph 16 means no more than ‘until’. The word is being used as a preposition, not as an adjective. Paragraph 16 does not say that the removal must be ‘pending’, still less that it must be ‘impending’. So long as the Secretary of State remains intent upon removing the person and there is some prospect of achieving this, paragraph 16 authorises detention meanwhile. Plainly it may become unreasonable actually to detain the person pending a long delayed removal (ie throughout the whole period until removal is finally achieved). But that does not mean that the power has lapsed. He remains ‘liable to detention’ and the ameliorating possibility of his temporary admission in lieu of detention arises under para 21.’


Lord Bingham Of Cornhill, Lord Hope Of Craighead, Lord Rodger Of Earlsferry, Baroness Hale Of Richmond, Lord Brown Of Eaton-Under-Heywood


[2005] UKHL 39, Times 17-Jun-2005, [2005] 3 WLR 1, [2006] 1 AC 207, [2005] INLR 538, [2005] 4 All ER 114


Bailii, House of Lords


Immigration Act 1971 Sch2


England and Wales


CitedRegina v Governor of Durham Prison, ex parte Hardial Singh QBD 13-Dec-1983
Unlawful Detention pending Deportation
An offender had been recommended for deportation following conviction. He had served his sentence and would otherwise have been released on parole. He had no passport and no valid travel documents. He complained that the length of time for which he . .
Appeal fromSecretary of State for the Home Department v Regina on the Application of Khadir CA 3-Apr-2003
The Secretary of State appealed an order requiring him to reconsider refusal of exceptional leave to remain. The applicant was an Iraqi Kurd. It was not possible to make immediate arrangements for repatriation after the order.
Held: The . .
CitedRe Wasfi Suleman Mahmod Admn 1995
The applicant was an Iraqi who had been granted asylum in Germany. On entering England as a visitor he was found in possession of opium and sentenced to four years’ imprisonment with a recommendation for deportation. He was served with a deportation . .
CitedBarker v Barking Havering and Brentwood Community Healthcare NHS Trust (Warley Hospital) and Anorther CA 30-Jul-1998
A person who is liable to be detained in a hospital by virtue of an application or order under that Act may either be actually detained or given leave of absence. While on leave of absence it may well be that the patient’s disorder is not such that . .
CitedTan Te Lam v Superintendent of Tai A Chau Detention Centre PC 27-Mar-1996
(Hong Kong) Migrants from Vietnam of Chinese ethnic origin had landed in Hong Kong by boat, and been refused refugee status. They were detained for several years under section 13D of the Immigration Ordinance ‘pending . . removal from Hong Kong’. . .
CitedI, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department CA 28-Jun-2002
The appellant obtained asylum but was convicted of offences after entering, and ordered to be deported. Whilst serving his sentence the deportation order was served, but he was not released on licence at the time he would normally have been . .
At First instanceHwez and Khadir v Secretary of State for the Home Departmentand Another Admn 29-Jul-2002
. .

Cited by:

CitedSK, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department Admn 25-Jan-2008
The claimant was a Zimbabwean National who was to be removed from the country. He was unlawfully held in detention pending removal. He sought damages for false imprisonment. He had been held over a long period pending decisions in the courts on the . .
CitedMH, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for The Home Department CA 14-Oct-2010
The claimant complained that his administrative detention for over 40 months had been unlawful. He now appealed against a finding that it had been lawful save for the final two months.
Held: The appeal failed. The period of time for which he . .
CitedKambadzi (previously referred to as SK (Zimbabwe)) v Secretary of State for The Home Department SC 25-May-2011
False Imprisonment Damages / Immigration Detention
The respondent had held the claimant in custody, but had failed to follow its own procedures. The claimant appealed against the rejection of his claim of false imprisonment. He had overstayed his immigration leave, and after convictions had served a . .
CitedB (Algeria) v Secretary of State for The Home Department SC 8-Feb-2018
Bail conditions only after detention
B had been held under immigration detention, but released by SIAC, purportedly in conditional bail, after they found there was no realistic prospect of his deportation because he had not disclosed his true identity. The court was asked ‘whether . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 30 June 2022; Ref: scu.226747