Late-night removal of family unlawful, declares judge

The late-night removal by gardaí of a couple and their seven-year-old son from their home last month for the purposes of deportation was unlawful but also disquieting and “quite simply distressing beyond words” for the boy, a judge said yesterday.

Mr Justice Gerard Hogan was satisfied the four gardaí involved behaved with individual personal propriety and showed courtesy to the family, but there were “features of the entire episode which are unsettling and, candidly, disquieting”.

He was commenting during a High Court ruling in which he found the State had no lawful power to enter the home of failed asylum seeker Tareek Omar, his wife Sheilah, and their son Tevin, who has lived here was born in Ireland in May 2006.

Gardaí arrived at their home in Limerick around 11pm on Nov 7 to enforce a deportation order against all three made by the minister for justice last September. They were driven to Dublin Airport where it was planned to put them on a flight to Tanzania via Amsterdam.

When Mr Omar said he did not want to return to Tanzania but would accept being sent to Kenya, he was formally arrested and taken to Cloverhill Prison while his wife and child were brought to Balseskin Accommodation Centre.

Yesterday, the judge ordered Mr Omar’s release.


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