Category Archives: deportees

Court Rules That ICE Can Not Sedate Deportees

Some deportees in the United States were given psychotropic drugs during a seven month period in 2006-2007. Most of those who were drugged did not have a history of mental problems.

In June a federal lawsuit was filed stemming from this practise by the American Civil Liberties Union.
56 detainees were sedated during their removals from the United States. Most of those had no prior history of mental problems.

The Associated Press revealed that an internal memo issued on Wednesday from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents must now be granted a court order prior to administering drugs “to facilitate an alien’s removal.” The memo was issued by John Torres and further stated that there are to be no exceptions to this new policy.

To be granted such an order the ICE must prove that the deportee has a history of physical resistance to being removed or be a threat to themselves.

“Medical sedation will only be considered as a last resort,” ICE spokeswoman Virginia Kice said.

The class action lawsuit is still pending. The suit follows after a some immigrants in Southern California laid claims to have been drugged or threatened to have drugs used on them during deportation attempts.

We are very happy that the government recognized that their barbaric sedation policy was wrong,” ACLU lawyer Ahilan Arulanantham said. “This has been a shameful chapter in the country’s immigration history.”

ACLU is going forward with the lawsuit hoping to learn more details. They hope to learn how sedation was used and who it was used on.

Amadou Diouf, one of the two plaintiffs in the lawsuit, said that he was sedated by injection on a plane that was to carry him home to his native Senegal after overstaying a student visa. He had asked to be allowed to talk to the pilot to inform him that he had a judge’s order temporarily staying his deportation.

Diouf said escorting ICE agents gave him the injection after he asked to speak with the plane’s pilot to tell him that he had a judge’s order temporarily staying his deportation.

Last year there was Senate testimony that 33 of 56 deportees were injected with psychotropic drugs without a prior history of problems. Julie Meyers, assistant secretary of homeland security for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said that the 36 demonstrated “combative behaviour.”

British Deportees Claim Abuse On Return Trips Home

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Britain does not monitor the safety of their deportees which seems to allow for abuses to occur. A dossier of 200 cases shows a horrible truth, guards responsible for escorting deportees back to their home countries have allegedly beaten their charges.

The dossier is a collection of evidence from doctors, lawyers, immigration centre visitors and campaign groups. The deportees have been failed asylum seekers, many of whom claim that they were abused on the long trek back to their home countries.

When a deportee rides to the airport they are put in a blacked out van. They can be drug across the runway in terror and it gets no better when they are on the flight. The private security companies that do the long escorts are paid a “bounty” for getting the person back to their home country and they want that pay. They are allowed reasonable force to get this task completed but there are questions on if their force is reasonable or out right abuse.

A prison ombudsman’s team watched a video of control and restraint techniques used on a female detainee. They reported: “An officer twisted her neck and kept twisting her wrists and swore at her while another officer put his/her hand in her mouth so she could not breathe.” However, the team concluded: “It was clear that everything was done in line with proper procedures.”

One of the cases involved Armand Tchuibeu from Cameroon who sought asylum in February 2000. His application was refused last year. He was arrested and prepped for removal. His removal date was January 29, 2007. On that day he was taken by four escort officers to Heathrow to catch a plane bound for Cameroon.

He claims the escort officials put handcuffs on his right arm, when he said there was no need for handcuffs, he was fully intending to return to Cameroon the guards started to be abusive towards him. He was punched by one of the guards and told words to the effect,

You will go to your fucking country today, we will fucking show you what illegal people deserve in our country”.

After that he was put into a leg strap.

He was injured in the process. The officers did take him to hospital where his knee was put into a cast.

His deportation was aborted because of the incident.

The British government hired a private company to escort failed asylum seekers from the country.

Birnberg Peirce, the London solicitors who are handling Mr. Tchuibeu’s case have failed a civil claim for assault against the security company in question.

Dr. Frank Arnold is a doctor with the Medical Justice Network has examined more than 100 injured detainees.

He said: “Some of these injuries have been so bad that police officers who saw them appear to have been genuinely shocked. But it is my experience that medical staff who examine asylum-seekers when they are taken back into detention have greatly underestimated the severity of the injuries, including fractures and nerve damage from forcible traction on handcuffs.”

In the past two years over 1,173 attempts to return detainees to their home countries have failed. Most of these cases are the fault of the detainee being too disruptive to board a plane or an 11th hour reprieve.

A smaller but significant amount though have failed because of injuries obtained on route to the airport caused by the security personnel escorting them.

Tchuibeu has been returned to Cameroon as of last month.