Chief Justice Roxane George today quashed an order for the deportation of 26 Haitian Nationals, who arrived in Guyana last year November, and were arrested by Police and taken into protective custody as it was suspected they were victims of human trafficking.
Delivering her ruling, the Chief Justice held that there was a breach of natural justice and the rights provisions of the Constitution of Guyana regarding the issuance of the deportation order. In accordance with Section 16 and 28 of the Immigration Act, the Chief Justice said the Haitians should have been allowed a hearing before the order for deportation was granted.
It is unclear if the Haitian nationals are still in Guyana. Media reports are that they have left the jurisdiction. Following the order for deportation, Allandres Archer, through lawyer, Darren Wade, filed an application challenging the constitutionality of the deportation.
Attorney General Anil Nandlall had filed an application asking the court to strike out Archer’s application. The Chief Justice, however, today refused the application sought my Nandlall, noting that it “had no merit.”
The Haitians arrived in Guyana on November 07, 2020, and were arrested by Police while they were en route to Brazil. They were taken to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) Headquarters where they were questioned.
The foreign nationals-10 males, nine females, and seven children-were later taken into protective custody as officials suspected they were victims of people smuggling. The Police and Home Affairs Ministry had launched a joint probe. They were later taken before a Magistrate who issued an order for their deportation in early December 2020.
It was reported that they were deported for breaching the Immigration Act when they lied to immigration officers about where they would be staying while in the country.