A British man who has never owned a passport, nor traveled abroad was told he would be deported to Uganda by authorities as he had no “lawful basis” to be in the UK.
Kyle Herbert, 22, who works for the fast food chain KFC, was astonished to receive the letter which ordered him to leave the country or risk a £5,000 (Shs 25m) fine, imprisonment and removal by force.
During the ordeal, he was almost sacked from his job after heavy handed immigration officers rang his bosses at KFC claiming that he was an illegal immigrant.
It meant the fast food worker was suspended without pay for a fortnight as he desperately tried to prove he was British.
During that time, Kyle feared officials swooping in at any moment and frog-marching him on to a plane filled with illegal immigrants.
He now worries about travelling abroad as he says that he has never received any official assurance that the matter has been resolved.
Kyle, who now works as a plasterer, said: ‘It was just ridiculous. Where did they get Uganda from?
‘I was at work and my manager called me over and said that the UK Border Agency had rang. They told her that I was wanted by the Home Office for deportation.
‘She told me that she had to suspend me because they had told her that that they could be prosecuted and fined if they kept me on the books.
‘I went home and immediately tried to get in touch with the Home Office but it was just ridiculous. The rigmarole was stupid; I couldn’t get through to them for days. All this time I was losing money because I couldn’t work. A week went by and another notice of removal came through, which said that I needed to report to a deportation center. At this point, I started getting really angry about it as I still couldn’t get through to them.’
He managed to get through to the Home Office officials after a week of trying and demanded an explanation.
He said: ‘I explained the situation. I was hysterical. I told him that the idea of me being deported to Uganda was ridiculous. I told the guy on my phone, do I sound like I’m from Uganda?
‘I was passed on to a manager who said that they had no idea how or why it had happened. They told me to put a claim in for compensation but that was a nightmare and I ended up giving up on it. I couldn’t believe that I was having to prove that I wasn’t an illegal immigrant when I was born here.’
An official communication from authorities indicates that; ‘Mr Herbert was sent a letter in May 2015 incorrectly warning that he was the subject of enforcement action. When the mistake was identified in October 2015, we wrote to Mr Herbert to acknowledge the error and apologise.’