Secretary of State for the Home Department v K, Fornah v Secretary of State for the Home Department: HL 18 Oct 2006

The claimants sought asylum, fearing persecution as members of a social group. The fear of persecution had been found to be well founded, but that persecution was seen not to arise from membership of a particular social group.
Held: The appeals succeeded. In order to found such a social group, the connection between the members of the claimed group had to be something greater than the fact of persecution, and had to be a characteristic relating to some more fundamental characteristic of identity. In the case of K, the adjudicator had been entitled to find as a fact that the claimant was persecuted as a member of a social group, his family. Fornah was a woman who if returned to Sierra Leone risked female genital mutilation. It was not difficult in such circumstances to classify women as a social group. That did not cease to be a group because once the mutilation was complete the risk disappeared.

Lord Bingham of Cornhill, Lord Hope of Craighead, Lord Rodger of Earlsferry; Baroness Hale of Richmond and Lord Brown of Eaton-under-Heywood
Times 19-Oct-2006, [2006] UKHL 46, [2007] 1 AC 412, [2007] 1 All ER 671, [2006] 3 WLR 733
EU Council Directive 2004/83/EC of 29 April 2004
England and Wales
Appeal fromFornah v Secretary of State for the Home Department CA 9-Jun-2005
The applicant sought refugee status, saying that if returned home to Sierra Leone, she would as a young woman be liable to be circumcised against her will.
Held: Female sexual mutilation ‘is an evil practice internationally condemned and in . .
CitedSecretary of State for the Home Department v Savchenkov 1996
. .
AffirmedRegina v Immigration Appeal Tribunal ex parte De Melo and ex parte De Araujo Admn 19-Jul-1996
The court considered a fear of persecution as founding a claim for asylum where a family member attracts the adverse attention of the authorities, whether for non-Convention reasons or reasons unknown, and persecutory treatment is then directed to . .
CitedJanuzi v Secretary of State for the Home Department and others HL 15-Feb-2006
The claimants sought to challenge the refusals of asylum in each case based upon the possibility of internal relocation. They said that such internal relocation would place them in areas where they could not be expected to live without undue . .
CriticisedQuijano v Secretary of State for Home Department CA 18-Dec-1996
The appellant asylum seeker claimed to have been persecuted as a member of his stepfather’s family, and thus of a particular social group, because members of a drug cartel had first persecuted the stepfather after he refused to co-operate with them . .
CitedRegina v Immigration Appeal Tribunal and Another ex parte Shah HL 25-Mar-1999
Both applicants, Islam and Shah, citizens of Pakistan, but otherwise unconnected with each other, had suffered violence in Pakistan after being falsely accused them of adultery. Both applicants arrived in the UK and were granted leave to enter as . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for the Home Department, ex parte Adan, Same, ex parte Aitsegeur HL 20-Dec-2000
The Convention gave protection to an asylum seeker fearing persecution by non-state agents in his country of origin where that government was unable or unwilling to provide protection. France and Germany did not recognise this right, and therefore . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for the Home Department, ex parte Sivakumar HL 20-Mar-2003
The appellant sought asylum. He had fled Sri Lanka. He was a Tamil and feared torture if he returned. His application had been rejected because the consequences flowed from his suspected involvement in terrorism, and that was not a Convention . .
CitedSepet and Bulbil v Secretary of State for the Home Department HL 20-Mar-2003
The appellants sought asylum. They were Kurdish pacifists, and claimed that they would be forced into the armed forces on pain of imprisonment if they were returned to Turkey.
Held: The concept of ‘persecution’ was central. It is necessary to . .
CitedSecretary of State for the Home Department v Skenderaj CA 26-Apr-2002
The applicant sought asylum, claiming to be a target of an Albanian blood feud. He appealed a finding that his claim was not for a Convention reason, and did not amount to a claim of a well-founded fear of persecution for reason of his membership of . .
CitedSuarez v Secretary of State for the Home Department CA 22-May-2002
The applicant for asylum had been threatened with death after witnessing a multiple murder as an army soldier. He had been already shot at before escaping.
Held: So long as an applicant can establish that one of the motives of his persecutor . .

Cited by:
CitedHJ (Iran) v Secretary of State for The Home Department; HT (Cameroon) v Same SC 7-Jul-2010
The claimants sought to prevent their removal and return to their countries of origin saying that as practising homosexuals they would face discrimination and persecution. They appealed against a judgment saying that they could avoid persecution by . .
CitedRT (Zimbabwe) and Others v Secretary of State for The Home Department SC 25-Jul-2012
The claimants said it would be wrong to return them to Zimbabwe where they would be able to evade persecution only by pretending to a loyalty to, and enthusiasm for the current regime.
Held: The Secretary of State’s appeals failed. The HJ . .
CitedStott, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Justice SC 28-Nov-2018
Extended Determinate Sentence created Other Status
The prisoner was subject to an extended determinate sentence (21 years plus 4) for 10 offences of rape. He complained that as such he would only be eligible for parole after serving two thirds of his sentence rather than one third, and said that . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.245381