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The Hon. Theresa May,
Secretary of State for the Home Department
London, EnglandReverend Annett's letter:
Dear Ms. May,
I am writing this formal letter of protest arising from my inhuman and shocking treatment at the hands of officers of the UK Border Agency on May 29-30, 2011 at Stansted Airport.
I am a Canadian citizen with a valid Canadian passport and no criminal record, and am an ordained clergyman who has made numerous visits to Britain in the past several years to conduct research and give occasional public lectures on church and missionary history.
On May 7, 2011, I arrived in Britain to stay about a month and to assist my daughter Elinor, who accompanied me and who has a valid work permit. I left Britain briefly on May 27and returned on May 29 after a brief visit with friends in the Netherlands.
Nevertheless, for nearly twelve hours upon my return to Stansted airport, I was detained,imprisoned, treated like a suspected criminal, and eventually barred from re-entering Britain. The only reason given for this mistreatment was that my giving occasional public lectures was not considered by the interrogating officer, apparently an expert on theological philosophy, sociology and political economics, to constitute â€œappropriateâ€ behaviour for a visitor to Britain!
I am appalled that a civilized nation like Britain would stoop to abuse a Commonwealth citizen in this manner. The officer who detained me, who refused to give me his name but whose badge number is 6676, was utterly intransigent and unreasonable, and refused to cite the law and statutes under which I was denied re-entry as a visitor to Britain. He caused both me and my daughter Elinor â€“ who was waiting to meet me in London - much distress and inconvenience over the following days,and did so without a shred of humanity.
Consequently, I was forced to spend over Â£300 obtaining a new plane ticket to Ireland after I was sent back to my starting point in Eindhoven, Netherlands. Even more serious is the fact that a permanent record of my refused re-entry to Britain has been stamped on my Canadian passport, and for that reason I was almost denied entry to Ireland during my recent attempt to return home from there to Canada.
Madame Secretary, this completely unnecessary incident could have been avoided if I had simply been allowed re-entry and a day or two of grace to set my affairs in order and obtain whatever work permit was required for me to conduct the public lectures that were supposedly the basis of the officerâ€™s decision to deny me re-entry. This would have been the sane and humanitarian course.
I consider that my human rights have been grossly violated and I have undergone completely unnecessary personal assault at the hands of your Border Agency officials.Unless I obtain an apology and compensation from your office, I intend to pursue this matter in the courts and will share what has happened in the various media channels to which I have access.
However, I hope this matter can be settled more simply, and I am therefore requesting from your office the chance to clear up this matter upon my return to Canada with the appropriate diplomatic and government offices there. I also request that my passport be cleared of this unfortunate incident and that I be financially compensated for the expenses incurred by me because of your officials, which total in excess of Â£300.
Ultimately,there can be no compensation for the insult, the duress and the inconvenience suffered by my family and me because of this incident, but I trust in the good graces of your government to help me correct this matter to avoid its repetition in the future.
I look forward to your early reply within a week, after which I will proceed with further action.
Reverend Kevin D. Annett, M.A., M.Div.
260 Kennedy St.
Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada V9R 2H8
Cc: Damien Green, Minister of State for Immigration
Prime Minister of Canada
Prime Minister of Great Britain
M.P. (Nanaimo) Jean Crowder
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It has been an honor and a privilege to provide more than 20 years of add free availability to those who seek further information on the reality of the global clergy abuse crisis in the Roman Catholic and other religions.
Contact me if you need assistance in locating specific pages or if you or someone you know understands the importance of keeping these pages active by assisting in keeping the full access to the sites information available to the general public.
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