A VIETNAMESE asylum seeker arrested at a Northwich nail salon has been granted the right to appeal his deportation.

The unnamed man was arrested at Nail Express in High Street in November 2016, – although he denied working there.

He sought asylum through the Scottish Court of Session, claiming to be a practicing Roman Catholic. He said he feared religious persecution if he returned to communist Vietnam, as well as becoming a victim of trafficking.

His ‘First-tier Tribunal’ claim was denied, and an ‘Upper Tribunal’ appeal dismissed on the grounds that he had given a false account of his arrest – claiming he had been detained in Worcester when in fact he was interviewed at Middlewich custody suite.

Northwich Guardian:

The FTT judge also did not believe that he was a Roman Catholic, despite having a tattoo of a priest on his chest – and said that he would not face persecution or trafficking regardless.

He produced a letter from a priest confirming his attendance at St Andrew’s Metropolitan Cathedral in Glasgow, although he did not know the name of the priest.

But Judicial Review judge Lady Carmichael said the man could be considered a Roman Catholic, and accepted expert reports of persecution in Vietnam which had been dismissed by the UT.

Northwich Guardian:

A report by international relations expert Professor Christoph Bluth said: “It is confirmed by many accounts that there is continuous harassment against Catholics and other religious groups involved in so-called unauthorised religious activities which are considered a threat to the social order.

“This harassment can include beatings, torture, imprisonment or death.

“There is a serious risk that the appellant will experience persecution in Vietnam due to his religious faith and practices.”

Lady Carmichael decided to allow the man a chance to appeal his FTT decision.