Cyprus Mail

Immigration slammed by Supreme Court, again

Menoyia detention centre

THE Supreme Court has slammed the immigration service for declaring the marriage of an Indian man and a Romanian woman a sham.

The couple objected that decision and filed an appeal with the Supreme Court, which found that immigration had no justifiable cause for declaring their marriage a sham and that the investigation of the case was inadequate.

According to the court decision, Immigration Services decided the marriage was fake, ignoring a statement from their community leader verifying that the couple was living together, as well statements by six other witness supporting their claim.

The court judge shot down immigration claims that the couple made contradicting statements regarding their marriage, calling them mere allegations by immigration officials.

The court was also very critical of the investigation process, pointing out that the officer in charge of the case did not bother visiting the couple at their home despite compelling evidence that they were living together. The judge noted that the officer drew his own conclusions without having enough evidence to support his case.

This was not the first time recently that immigration was in hot water with the Supreme Court.

On February 7 the Supreme Court issued a decision slamming the service for not following a December 19 Supreme Court decision to release a Bosnian national who was in custody at the Menoyia detention centre. Immigration’s response was that the matter was of a sensitive legal nature “and may affect the immigration service’s ability to handle similar cases”.

Immigration troubles also extend outside the island. The European Commission is said to be currently investigating practices regarding Cyprus’ policy towards sham marriages, after having received numerous complaints.

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