CA issues 'Solomonic' decision for Brit wanted in US
MANILA - The Court of Appeals (CA) has ordered the deportation of a British national, but immigration officers must make sure he will not pass by any airport under the jurisdiction of the United States.
British Gypsy Nirvana is wanted in the US for money laundering and drug trafficking.
The appellate court’s special seventh division decided on humanitarian considerations, however, since he has four minor children with his Filipina girlfriend. A fifth child may have also been delivered during the pendency of the case.
"It would appear in the final analysis that the only concern that petitioner has in refusing to be deported is his fear for his life and safety upon knowing that he would be flown to Los Angeles for one hour and twenty five-minutes stopover before taking a connecting flight to London," the decision penned by Associate Justice Agnes Reyes-Carpio read.
The CA thus came up with a “Solomonic solution”: The Bureau of Immigration must make sure that he will have a direct flight to the United Kingdom. If this is not possible, his connecting flight should not be in an airport under the jurisdiction of the US.
"The law may be harsh, but it does not render us all heartless. Indeed, the law is solicitous to everyone regardless of his station in life," the CA said.
Nirvana is allegedly engaged in a UK-based marijuana seed auction business, which caters to customers in the US.
Immigration Commissioner Siegfred Mison said the business was done online, mail, or wire transfers.
Nirvana’s former associates supposedly tipped US authorities of his activities. On August 15, 2013, Bangor, Maine, USA issued a warrant for his arrest.
Upon receiving information of the arrest warrant, Mison issued a mission order against Nirvana to check if he has violated immigration laws.
The British national was eventually arrested days later on August 28 in Subic Freeport, Olongapo City. He was subsequently brought to the BI detention center in Bicutan, Taguig City.
Nirvana’s immigrant status was also cancelled.
However, the BI’s deportation order on September 2, 2013 was halted after Nirvana secured a writ of habeas corpus from a Manila court. This was later recalled on the ground that Nirvana’s only recourse was for an appeal of the summary deportation.
Nirvana was scheduled to be deported on September 7, 2013 via a connecting flight from Los Angeles.
Airline authorities, however, rejected him because he became unruly at the airport.