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LICENSING


UNUSUAL PREMISES? DON’T BE PUT OFF APPLYING FOR AN ALCOHOL LICENCE

 If you’re not the owner of your stereotypical local boozer, high street café bar or corner shop, don’t be put off applying for a premises licence to sell alcohol on your property. You may even just hold occasional temporary events and be fed up of going through the motions for a temporary licence every time, in which case permanent legal clearance might be an easier option for you. A premises licence authorises the use of any premises for licensable activities applied for – which includes the supply of alcohol - under the Licensing Act 2003.

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DIVORCE - MATRIMONIAL FINANCE


LANDMARK COURT RULING MEANS DIVORCE CASES CAN BE RE-OPENED IF EX LIED ABOUT WEALTH DURING SETTLEMENT

On Wednesday 14.10.15 the UK’s highest court of law, the Supreme Court, made the historical ruling that people who discover their former spouse lied about their wealth during financial remedy proceedings following divorce will be able to reopen their settlements.

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IN FOCUS: UK HUMAN TRAFFICKING ON THE RISE

Human Trafficking is the illegal movement of people, usually for the purpose of forced labour, including domestic servitude, or sexual exploitation. The United Kingdom is a prime destination for men women and children from Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe. The UK Human Trafficking Centre – part of the National Crime Agency’s Organised Crime Command, works tirelessly with the Home Office, police, UK Border Force, and international agencies.

Despite that, however, Human Trafficking is on the increase. In 2015 in the UK, arrests were made in Yorkshire, Berkshire and London. Labour MP Naz Shah has spoken up about the 'hidden cost' of immigration: the trafficking of people, especially women, being exploited by gangs and the 'low wage culture'. 

What is Human Trafficking?

Human Trafficking involves exploitation of people with no border crossings, and can take place internally (as opposed to Human Smuggling, which involves border crossing, and is transport based). It involves vulnerable people seeking work and a better life. They are manipulated with the attraction of an income, security and comfort. In particular, for people with little or nothing to lose, the proposition is too good to turn down.

These people are enticed with lies. They are then caught in a vicious cycle from which they find it difficult to break out of.

Often, identification documents including passports are taken in apparent good faith - and never returned. With that goes their independence and freedom.

Victims of Human Trafficking are forced into illegal, most often inhumane work lives. Employment rights do not exist for them, and forced labour for up to 16 hours per day is not uncommon.

Their ‘employers’ – or masters – are cruel to them, verbally and physically. Victims can develop ‘Stockholm syndrome’ – also known as captive-bonding, whereby such individuals develop sympathy or even respect for their captors. If a victim is regularly beaten, it can become such a part of their daily or weekly routine that missing a beating leaves them wondering if they have done something wrong.

Human Trafficking victims are denied proper accommodation; proper medical care; and the work demands on them do not change.

Sexual exploitation is rife, even for those victims whose primary ‘job’ is not prostitution.

Kept away from the authorities, and often the outside world generally, leaves victims with no way out. Even those victims of Human Trafficking who are allowed access to the world around them are usually mentally restrained from speaking out or finding help, due to the culture of fear and mental bondage maintained by their captors. There is no way to get home, or to a safe place or lifestyle where their Human Rights will be upheld, where they can enjoy the kind of income and security they had expected from the beginning.

The victims who do find help often do so by chance, when a member of the public sees suspicious behaviour and reports it to the police.

Many victims however have to endure further trauma, when they face their captors in court. Generally, any process in which they have to revisit their experiences will be traumatic – but will lead them along a better path from which they can start their life again and live as a respected human being.

Being a victim of trafficking is a fundamental basis on which an Application for Leave to Remain can be made, and indeed Human Trafficking is right at the heart of Immigration Law.

At Craig Gee & Co Solicitors we have a leading, specialist team in Immigration, Asylum and Human Rights Law. We offer concise, immediate advice in all immigration-related areas including Human Trafficking, and are fully up to date with the fast moving changes in this ever-evolving area of law.

Call us today on 0161 666 9999 to arrange an appointment.