Monday, May 31, 2010

Asylum backlog cost at least €26m last year

MORE than 2,300 of the country's asylum seekers in full-time accommodation have been in the system for more than three years.

The incredibly slow pace of progress in clearing the backlog of applications cost at least €26m last year, just to provide bed and board.

The Department of Justice has said new legislation to tackle the growing length of time involved in dealing with applications will be enacted shortly.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Slovak fraudster jailed

AN unemployed social worker scammed a mobile company store into selling him handsets at bill-pay prices, before selling them on at a profit.

Jozef Jurecko (34) used a fake passport and bank account to buy the low-cost phones that he then sold. A court heard that he had turned to crime after being laid off from a construction job.

Judge Catherine Murphy jailed him for six months after he admitted to a number of theft and fraud offences.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

No right to work for non-EU family members

THE GOVERNMENT is removing the right to work for non-EU family members of EU citizens while they await a decision on their right to residency in Ireland.

The decision reflects concerns over rising unemployment and the Department of Justice’s ongoing campaign targeting so-called “sham marriages” between EU citizens and third country nationals.

Under current rules, the family members of EU citizens who settle in the Republic can work while the Government considers their right to residency. It usually takes six months for the department to process residency cards.

Traders back shop owner in racism row

TRADERS have backed a shop owner who has been accused of racism after displaying photographs of Romany gypsies in her store following a spate of shoplifting

Joan Lucey, the owner of independent Cork-based book store chain, Vibes & Scribes, denied she was being racist and said she felt she had no other option.

Tribunal rejects 92% of refugee appeals

THE REFUGEE Appeals Tribunal rejected 92 per cent of the appeals it ruled on last year, which marks a fifth successive annual rise in the rejection rate for asylum appeals.

The tribunal affirmed 2,987 decisions of the Refugee Applications Commissioner in 2009 and set aside 266 decisions. Almost half the successful appeals against decisions not to grant refugee status (50) were lodged by Iraqis.

The tribunal overturned 7 per cent of decisions not to grant refugee status to people from Moldova and 6 per cent of decisions to people from Zimbabwe and DR Congo. It accepted 3 per cent of appeals lodged by Nigerians and Pakistanis respectively, according to the tribunal’s 2009 annual report released yesterday.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Crackdown on Child Benefit under way

PARENTS will have to prove that they live in the country and are entitled to the Children’s Allowance as part of a crackdown on payments to families who are no longer living in Ireland or cannot prove habitual residence here.

Up until May 2004 Children’s Allowance was granted to all children in the country regardless of the earnings or status of their payments.

But the rules changed and the right was removed from parents who could not prove habitual residence.

Criticism of conditions in asylum hostels

AN organisation which works with asylum seekers in Limerick has hit out at the living conditions in hostels.

Ms McHugh said: "In one city centre hostel, which was a hotel, there are four to six people living in rooms. The people living in the rooms come from different countries and speak different languages. There has to be a health and safety issue with these kind of numbers in the same room. The Reception and Integration Agency (RIA) seem to think this is all right and complies with regulations.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Al-Qaeda extremists are taking hold here, claims Muslim cleric

EXTREMIST Muslims influenced by al-Qaeda are taking a hold in Ireland and some of these young adults are becoming influential in the country's universities, the Muslim religious leader of a Dublin mosque has warned.

Two Muslims living in Ireland have been charged with minor offences relating to the international investigation into the alleged plot to murder cartoonist Lars Vilks, who controversially depicted the prophet Mohammed with the body of a dog.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Two-thirds of immigrants planning to stay

TWO-THIRDS of immigrants plan to stay in the Republic despite the recession and many working in jobs below their skill level, a new reports shows.

An EU-funded report on the training needs of young immigrants found 68 per cent of immigrants planned to stay on.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

75% of applications for asylum here rejected

THE GOVERNMENT rejected three-quarters of the 4,040 asylum applications it considered last year, which is slightly higher than the average rejection rate in the EU.

Some 1,030 people were given positive decisions, providing them with the legal right to remain in the Republic. The vast majority of successful applicants (885) were allowed to stay in the country for humanitarian reasons, such as having an Irish citizen child. Some 105 people got refugee status and 40 people were awarded subsidiary protection, according to the EU statistics agency, Eurostat

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Two-thirds of refugees claiming to be Somalian are lying

ALMOST two-thirds of asylum seekers who claimed to be from war-torn Somalia last year were found to be lying.

The immigration authorities mounted a special operation, which involved inviting the "Somali" nationals to do interviews with a language analyst, and checking their applications against the British authorities' database.

They found that 61pc of the 104 applicants who last year said they were from Somalia had applied for visas in Britain under a different nationality.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Three Spanish women admit running brothel

Three Spanish women have been told to leave the country after they admitted running a brothel in Limerick city.

Judge Tom O'Donnell imposed suspended jail sentences on each of the women on condition they leave the country in the coming week.