UK Gov’t grants humanitarian protection to T&T man caught up in CJ controversy

Dillian Johnson

(Trinidad Guardian) Dil­lian John­son, who fled the coun­try in De­cem­ber 2017 af­ter he was shot at his Gas­par­il­lo home and claimed that he was a vic­tim of a tar­get­ed hit, has been grant­ed hu­man­i­tar­i­an pro­tec­tion in the Unit­ed King­dom.

“I just feel vin­di­cat­ed,” was John­son’s la­con­ic re­sponse to a ques­tion sent to him by Guardian Me­dia via email.

John­son re­ceived the news from his lawyers Sarah Lat­timer and Michael Mc Gar­vey ear­li­er to­day af­ter the Unit­ed King­dom Home Of­fice of Visas and Im­mi­gra­tion weighed his case and sent their de­ci­sion to his lawyers via email and hard copy, along with a 38-page judg­ment.

The email read: “The Home Of­fice has sent a pos­i­tive de­ci­sion to your le­gal team. You have been grant­ed Hu­man­i­tar­i­an Pro­tec­tion.”

At­tached was a link to a book­let out­lin­ing the Home Of­fice’s con­di­tions on hu­man­i­tar­i­an pro­tec­tion.

Un­der the sub­head­ing Stan­dard of proof, it stat­ed, “Hu­man­i­tar­i­an Pro­tec­tion must be grant­ed where there are sub­stan­tial grounds for be­liev­ing that there is a re­al risk of se­ri­ous harm. In con­sid­er­ing whether there are such grounds the stan­dard of proof to be ap­plied is the same as ap­plies in asy­lum, that is ‘a rea­son­able de­gree of like­li­hood’ that the per­son would face a ‘re­al risk’ of se­ri­ous harm on re­turn to their coun­try of ori­gin.”

It al­so stat­ed un­der Bur­den of proof, “The bur­den of sub­stan­ti­at­ing a claim lies with the claimant, who must es­tab­lish to the rel­a­tive­ly low stan­dard of proof re­quired that they qual­i­fy for pro­tec­tion. Para­graph 339I of the Im­mi­gra­tion Rules em­pha­sis­es the bur­den is on the claimant to pro­vide ev­i­dence and the du­ty of the case­work­er to as­sess the in­for­ma­tion put for­ward in co­op­er­a­tion with the per­son. Case­work­ers must ex­am­ine, in­ves­ti­gate and re­search the avail­able ev­i­dence and, if ap­pro­pri­ate, in­vite fur­ther sub­mis­sion of ev­i­dence if nec­es­sary.”

When an in­di­vid­ual is grant­ed hu­man­i­tar­i­an pro­tec­tion they are el­i­gi­ble to be grant­ed a British pass­port with­in a few weeks with no trav­el re­stric­tions, un­like some­one who is grant­ed refugee sta­tus.

John­son’s moth­er said “I think it is more than de­serv­ing and I wish him all the best.”

Pe­ter Tatchell, a British hu­man rights cam­paign­er, who had been out­spo­ken about John­son’s case told Guardian Me­dia Lim­it­ed via phone, “Dil­lian had a very strong case for asy­lum be­cause he was at se­ri­ous risk of be­ing killed if he got back to Trinidad and To­ba­go. I am de­light­ed that the Home Of­fice grant­ed him hu­man­i­tar­i­an pro­tec­tion and it is a tragedy he had to leave his home coun­try.”

Tatchell added, “I hope that wit­ness­es in his case get full po­lice pro­tec­tion be­cause they are now at risk of be­ing killed.

Fur­ther po­lice ac­tion is re­quired to bring to jus­tice the peo­ple re­spon­si­ble for shoot­ing him out­side his home in 2017.”

Al­le­ga­tions sur­faced in 2017 that Chief Jus­tice Ivor Archie tried to in­flu­ence Supreme Court jus­tices to change their per­son­al state-pro­vid­ed se­cu­ri­ty in favour of a pri­vate se­cu­ri­ty com­pa­ny that em­ploys his “close friend” Dil­lian John­son, a con­vict­ed felon, as a con­sul­tant.

John­son claimed that a high rank­ing ju­di­cial of­fi­cer con­spired with law en­force­ment per­son­nel to have him killed.

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