Aneurin Brewer responds to CoA judgement relating to criminalisation of small boat arrivals

March 8, 2023

Aneurin Brewer has responded to the recent Court of Appeal refusal of an appeal by small boat arrivals and pilots against their prosecutions by the CPS.

On 2 March 2023, the Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal of this decision made by four Sudanese men being prosecuted ( Rex v Ashari Mohamed & others [2023] EWCA Crim 211)

This legal challenge was the first of its kind against the enforcement of statutory provisions as amended by the 2022 Nationality and Borders Act, which came into effect on 28 June 2022, seeking to criminalize migrants crossing the Channel to the UK to seek asylum.

Aneurin Brewer writing with David L Suber (UCL Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science) for Free Movement online magazine said:

“It is likely this judgement will open the door to regular prosecutions of passengers and pilots of small boat crossings of the Channel which have become such a cause of concern for the current Government.”

Read full piece here: [Freemovement]

In Feb 2022, Aneurin Brewer successfully appealed the convictions of six separate asylum seekers who steered small boats of asylum seekers across the English Channel and were convicted of facilitation of breaches of immigration law by the other asylum seekers on board. The cases concerned a mixture of appellants who had pleaded guilty as they had not been advised they had a defence in law or had been convicted after their jury at trial had not been directed they had a defence available. The Court of Appeal ruled the convictions should be quashed.