London Metropolitan University has lodged an application for urgent judicial review of the decision to revoke its sponsorship licence for overseas students. The revocation of its “highly trusted sponsor” status by the UKBA was based on findings from a sample of its student files. It was found that 26 out of 101 sampled students had no valid visa to be in the UK, there were attendance problems and some students did not speak English to the required level. The university’s vice chancellor disputes the findings of the report and said that the UKBA has been “rewriting its own guidelines”.
As it stands international students enrolled at the university have 60 days from the date the UKBA contacts them to find a course at an alternative institution or arrange to leave the UK, leaving thousands out of pocket with incomplete degrees.
Stephen Gough, the man popularly known as “the Naked Rambler” has been in court again for breach of the peace and was sentenced to a further five months’ imprisonment. The trial judge slammed him for showing “disregard for other members of the public, in particular children who have the right not to see naked men”. Gough has spent the majority of the past six years in prison for similar offences.
The Home Secretary has launched a consultation on the operation of police powers under the Terrorism Act 2000, Sch 7. Changes under consideration include those to “stop and detain” powers, regular review of whether continued detention is necessary, training in proper use of Sch 7, rights to publically funded legal advice, strip searches and DNA samples. Responses are due by 6 December 2012.
The Attorney General will consider whether there is sufficient evidence to quash the original inquest into the Hillsborough disaster and start a new inquest process following the release of a report published by the Hillsborough Independent Panel. The report revealed a number of fresh details, including showing flaws in the coroner’s fundamental assertion that events that took place after 3.15pm on the day of the disaster would not have made any difference as the victims were already fatally injured.
Criticisms of Applied Language Services (ALS), the company contracted to provide courtroom translations, have been mounting again in a critical report by the National Audit Office. The investigation found that the number of trials recorded as ineffective due to interpreters not being available has doubled since last year, and that ALS had failed to ensure that interpreters registered with them had undergone enhanced CRB checks. Also, against a target of 98% ALS had only supplied an interpreter in 58% of the hearings they were required for in February 2012.