SCORES of people are feared to have been wrongly removed or deported because of the Windrush scandal, home secretary Sajid Javid admitted yesterday.
Mr Javid added: "So far we have found - and I would preface these are not final numbers, they are subject to change because the work is still ongoing - we have found 63 cases where individuals could have entered the United Kingdom before 1973, so these are Caribbean Commonwealth [citizens], who could have entered before 1973".
Although Mr Javid stressed the figure was provisional, his admission gave an indication of the scale of the exercise facing the Home Office.
Mr Javid denied there was a "systemic" problem in the Home Office, but accepted that in Windrush cases people had faced "too large a burden" in proving long-term residency.
Home Office officials have scoured through 8,000 records since 2002 and up to 63 people, aged over 45, could have been expelled from Britain, 32 of whom were labelled foreign national offenders, and 31 administrative removals. Many came to the United Kingdom legally as children but have no formal documentation, which has also led to them being refused jobs or healthcare.
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The immigrants are named after the Empire Windrush, one of the first ships to bring Caribbean migrants to the United Kingdom in 1948.
"We have found 63 cases where individuals could have entered the United Kingdom before 1973 [and were eligible for protection from removal]", Mr Javid told MPs.
The United Kingdom could have wrongly deported up to 63 immigrants of Caribbean origin, it emerged Tuesday, in the latest embarrassing revelation of a mounting scandal that has damaged the reputation of British prime minister Theresa May.
Home Secretary Sajid Javid - whose predecessor Amber Rudd lost her job over the scandal - said the figure could change. "I also want to know the figures of those who have been detained", she said.