Illegal immigrant ‘found hiding’ in Dungannon area had already been deported

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An illegal immigrant found hiding in the Dungannon area will serve a six month prison sentence before being deported from the country.

Appearing before East Tyrone Magistrates Court via video link from HMP Maghaberry was 34-year-old Vitalijus Timofejevas whose address was recorded as Hollow Mills Meadows in Newmills.

The court heard how police discovered the defendant at a Dungannon address during a search of a residence on August 22.

He was identified as an illegal alien who was in breach of an exclusion order, which had been served when he was outside the United Kingdom in 2013.

The court heard how he had previously breached the order and was deported in January 2016.

Following his detection, Timofejevas was placed in immigration custody at Larne House by police.

Under interview he made a full admission to the charge of breach of a deportation order, telling police that he had only returned to Northern Ireland to see family and collect his tools.

“This is a slightly unusual case,” a solicitor for the defence told the court. “His explanation to police of his reason for being here was simply not good enough.

“He has been in custody since August 23 and has a significant and wide-ranging record.

“There really is a certain inevitability about these proceedings.”

Deliberating over sentence, District Judge John Meehan said: “It is obvious that he refuses to recognise the authority of the deportation order.

“You are not allowed to return to the United Kingdom... had you been in any doubt about that,” he told the defendant.

“You were detected returning to Northern Ireland in January and were deported. Your subsequent return was quite determined and quite defiant of the law.

“This time you will go to prison for four months and you can expect, upon your release, to be deported again.

“If you come back it will be a longer sentence.

“You would be wise to proceed thereafter under the assumption that your presence in Northern Ireland is not hard for police to discern.”

Judge Meehan also imposed an offender’s levy of £25.