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Fiji man fights to stay in the UK

July 22, 2012 10:13 pm

A Fiji man who served in the British Army for 13 years is fighting to stay in the UK after being told he must leave the country by 9th August.

Lance Corporal Isimeli Baleiwai served in Afghanistan and Iraq, before voluntarily leaving the Army in June.

But disciplinary action for a 2010 fight with a colleague means he is considered to have a criminal record.

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The 32-year-old applied for British citizenship in March 2012 because he planned to leave the Army.

But on 28 June – Baleiwai heard that he had been refused citizenship and would also be refused Indefinite Leave to Remain because he had what the UK
Border Agency classed as a criminal conviction.

Baleiwai told the BBC News – he feels betrayed as he was considered not good enough to be a citizen of the UK and yet throughout those 13 years – he paid
his taxes, and served the Queen.

He is married to a British national with whom he has two children, aged three and six.

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