Eight Fijian-born soldiers who served with the British army in Iraq and Afghanistan have lost their initial bid for a judicial review of the handling of their immigration claims.
A high court judge said the Commonwealth veterans were “out of time” – and ordered them to pay £12,000 court costs.
The veterans will be able to demand a fuller oral hearing in December.
The British army actively recruits from Fiji and those who serve more than four years have the right to remain in the UK if they can afford the application fees.
The eight say that because of systemic administrative errors they were not properly informed of their rights when discharged.
Esita Tuimanu, from Commonwealth Neglected Veterans, said the eight were victims of “institutional discrimination” by the Home Office and Ministry of Defence.
Since leaving the Army, Taitus Ratucaucau has struggled to cover the cost of visa fees for himself and his three daughters, which have since doubled to £10,000 per person.
He is undergoing physio at a central London hospital after surgeons removed a tumour from his brain. Because he’s an ‘illegal immigrant’, the NHS presented him with treatment bill of £50,000.
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