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New figures: deportations of non-Irish criminals fell sharply in 10 year period

The number of non-EU nationals deported from Ireland after committing a crime fell significantly during a 10-year period, figures released by the Minister for Justice in response to an inquiry from Meath West TD, Peadar Tóibín, show.

The Aontú leader said that he believed “the ideology of the current government” is a contributor to the fall. He also said that Ireland should not be granting residency or citizenship to anyone convicted of a violent crime.

“Let me be clear we as a country should not be giving residency or citizenship to anyone is has been convicted for a violent crime. For to do so puts our own citizens in danger. There is no human rights or humanitarian compunction on us a country to give criminals from other countries residency,” Deputy Tóibín said.

While the number of deportations collapsed during the Covid period of 2020/21, sharp declines were also evidenced by the figures from the previous period from 2012 to 2019.

The Minister for Justice, Helen McEntee, said that while 273 deportation orders of non-EU nationals in relation to criminality were enforced in 2012, just 5 were enforced in 2021.

Prior to the Covid period, the figures indicate a sharp downward trend, with a fall to 173 deportations in 2013, and then another significant fall to 73 in 2014, while just 45 non-EU nationals who had “one or more serious criminal convictions” or were in breach of the Immigration Act were deported in 2015.

The table released to Deputy Tóibín showed that deportations fell by more than 80% in 2015 in contrast to 2012, and that number remained relatively low for 2016 (62 deportations) and 2017 (82 deportations).

In 2019, the number of deportations rose again to 155, before the numbers shrank again during the Covid period, falling to 59 in 2020 and just 5 in 2021.

Since 2012, 1,012 non-EU citizens have had deportation orders enforced, the Minister said, giving the yearly breakdown as follows:

Year Enforced
























“The statistics are not maintained by my Department in a manner that would allow for further breakdown as requested by the Deputy. However, I can confirm that the five people deported in 2021 all had criminal convictions,” she said.

Deputy Tóibín had asked the Minister for Justice if immigrants to Ireland are “checked for previous criminal records” and whether “immigrants from the European Union or outside of the European Union are allowed by the State to stay in Ireland in cases in which they have found guilty of a crime, in particular a violent crime”.

He also asked if the State did not allow them to stay, “if they are returned to their home country” and queried “the number of European Union and non-European Union immigrants who have been sent home to their home countries in each of the past ten years for having a criminal record or having a history of violent or sexual assault.”

In reply, Minister Helen McEntee said that “EU citizens do not require a visa to travel to Ireland and may reside freely in any EU Member State. Furthermore, EEA and Swiss nationals are not required to register with immigration authorities.”

“Not all non-EEA nationals are visa required,” she added.

“Under the European Communities Free Movement of Persons Regulations 2015, I may make a removal order in respect of an EU national who represents a danger for public policy or public security if their conduct represents a genuine, present and sufficiently serious threat affecting one of the fundamental interests of society. If an EU national residing in Ireland is found guilty of a crime, including a violent crime, the Garda National Immigration Bureau will notify my Department,” she said.

“However, if the person has resided in the State for more than 10 years or is under the age of 18 years, a removal order can only be made on imperative grounds of public security. The family and economic circumstances of the person are also assessed, the nature of their social and cultural integration in the State, the health of the person and their links with their country of origin, in deciding whether or not to make such an order,” she added.

“For non-EU citizens residing in Ireland, each individual immigration case is assessed under the criteria set out in Section 3(6) of the Immigration Act 1999 (as amended). These criteria include the age of the person, their duration of residence in the State, the family and economic circumstances of the person, their character and conduct, including any criminal convictions and considerations of national security and public policy. The individual’s ‘character and conduct’ is assessed both within and (where relevant and ascertainable) outside the State. Any and all criminal convictions are considered, including violent crime. An Garda Síochána notify my Department of matters which may be relevant to its considerations. Equally, any permission granted can be revoked if the individual fails to obey the laws of the State or becomes involved in criminal activity,” the Minister said.

“If the crime is serious or a violent crime, the person may be removed to their home Member State or deported to their country of origin.”

Minister McEntee also provided Deputy Tóibín with figures for EU citizens who were removed from the state since 2012, all of whom had criminal convictions. Some 634 people were deported, with the yearly breakdown is as follows:

Year Effected
























Speaking to Gript, Deputy Tóibín said that Ireland was shocked by the horrifying murder of Ashling Murphy by Josef Puska.

“Many people were also shocked that Puska was a convicted sex offender in his native Slovakia before he moved to Ireland,” he said.

“Let me be clear we as a country should not be giving residency or citizenship to anyone is has been convicted for a violent crime. For to do so puts our own citizens in danger. There is no human rights or humanitarian compunction on us a country to give criminals from other countries residency,” the Aontú leader said.

“We in Aontú have been questioning the government’s action on this for a number of years. Under the European Communities Free Movement of Persons Regulations 2015, the government can make a removal order in respect of an EU national who represents a danger a to public security. Data given to us by the Minister indicates that there has been a significant fall in the use of this power by the government in the last few years. Between 2017 and 2021 there has been a 60% fall in the numbers of people that have been removed,” he said.

“Its also significant that the number of non-EU citizens have had deportation orders enforced as a result of criminal backgrounds has also taken a significant fall in recent years too,” he added.

“This may be in part because of Covid but I have no doubt that the ideology of the current government is also a contributor.”

“Shockingly the government do not even collect data on the number of international protection applicants who have been removed as a result of having a criminal record gained abroad or in Ireland. This is a dereliction of duty by the government.The government are refusing to implement even the law as it stands,” Deputy Toibin said.

A report in March of this year on a discussion paper from the Department of Justice showed that the majority of Irish deportation orders which were approved were never actually carried out. The Irish Examiner said that:

Figures from the discussion paper show that in the years leading up to the Covid-19 pandemic, only between 15 and 45 per cent of deportation orders were actually carried out.

In 2017 for example, there were 930 deportation orders signed but only 140 – or 15 per cent – of them were actually “effected”.

For 2019, the Minister for Justice signed off on 1,468 separate deportation orders but just 299 of them were executed, a rate of 20 per cent.

The proportion did rise higher during the Covid-19 pandemic, but only because a moratorium on signing deportations was introduced.

Last week, Minister McEntee told Gript’s Ben Scallan that there was a system of self-deportation but that if criminals failed to self-deport they would come to the attention of an Garda Síochana. However, Mr Scallan questioned whether a system was in place which checked if criminals had left the country.

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Mary Reynolds
15 days ago

Very easy to check if he has deported himself. Social welfare records show if he is here or not. Very hard to check his criminal record on entry to Ireland because he may have a forged passport or no passport at all. Mass illegal immigration flooding in across open borders will finish Ireland. They are coming from all over. Busloads of illegals dumped on communities causing havoc. Resistance springing up everywhere, people out protesting, their peace of mind shattered but Mr Varadker says he does ‘not regret for one minute that Ireland took in so many asylum seekers’. Those bogus asylum seekers are overvalued and the Irish are walked on. It means he does not regret that they got and continue to get priority in housing and accompanying benefits and walked in over the Irish, who are waiting patiently on the housing lists and the homeless on the streets. Teaching them English in schools is using up teachers who are badly needed in the mainstream classrooms. All our services are under stress. Sinn Féin in power will be worse. We have a far greater percentage of ‘refugees’ than many European countries, who have strict migration controls now. Despite the dire situation we are in, we have no anti migration candidates ready for the elections who would put an end to this madness. We must deport. We do not want any more migrants, either good or bad because we are swamped. If we get our percentage of ‘refugees’ down to the levels of France or Italy, it would be a start, even though they think they are swamped and are working on getting their numbers down. We are at the pin of our collar giving to the foreigner. It must end.
‘Do not take the thatch from your own roof to put slates on another man’s house’ – old Irish proverb.

15 days ago

The Irish political class are, by their policies and actions, compromising the security and safety of Irish citizens and charging them via their taxes to house and support criminals from all over the world. This will not end well ………#AislingMurphy +

In the light of his recent political statements, would you vote for Conor McGregor if he ran for election?

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