LONDON Mayor Sadiq Khan has defended Darrell and Darren Roberts, who are set to be deported for their convictions for grievous bodily harm, leading to much backlash online.
On Twitter, Labour’s London Mayor Sadiq Khan has sparked an uproar by defending two criminals, of who are due to be sent back to their nations of origin in Grenada and the Dominican Republic, after their convictions for grievous bodily harm come to an end. Twins Darren and Darrell Roberts, of Grenadian and Dominican heritage respectively, are due to be sent back after having being convicted for GBH according to their partners, with the latter being sentenced in 2013 after beating a 35-year-old. This is due to their parents not having British citizenship, and the Roberts never being classified for it through the social services in Ealing, London that took them in.
In the tweet, Khan stated that it was ‘a national disgrace that hundreds of thousands of young Londoners born and raised in the UK live in constant fear of deportation’. He accused the British government of ‘tearing families apart’, and called upon them to ‘end their hostile environment policies immediately’.
The hostile environment policy was initiated back in 2012 by the then Conservative Home Secretary Theresa May in order to curb illegal immigration, but it became controversial for its alleged links to the Windrush scandal in 2018. The term had previously been coined in reference to immigration policy by former Labour Cabinet Ministers, including Home Secretary Alan Johnson and Immigration Minister Liam Byrne.
It's a national disgrace that hundreds of thousands of young Londoners born and raised in the UK live in constant fear of deportation. The Govt is tearing families apart. They must end their hostile environment policies immediately. https://t.co/QDgNNajPiO
— Mayor of London (gov.uk/coronavirus) (@MayorofLondon) July 8, 2020
This led to much anger online, with many complaining that Khan was defending criminals. Breitbart London Deputy Editor Jack Montgomery was questioning why Khan didn’t reveal the ‘details on the crime that landed them in prison’ or the ‘victim’ involved, sarcastically calling it a ‘surprise’ that it was deliberately left out.
Twitter user Nikki Page criticised Khan for ‘tearing families apart by not focusing on crime’ and felt he could do more to prevent ‘all these terrible knife attacks and other violence on our streets’, advocating Londoners vote for his Conservative rival Shaun Bailey in the next Mayoral election. User Ian Cornwell accused Labour of ‘supporting violent criminals again’, while user Greer Grant called the twins ‘wronguns’.
Khan has been the London Mayor since winning the position during the 2016 Mayoral election, having previously served as the MP for Tooting since 2005. He is standing for re-election in the 2021 Mayoral election. The election was meant to take place this year, back had been pushed back due to the coronavirus outbreak, which led the UK to a nationwide lockdown.