A Jamaican murderer and two rapists avoided deportation today following legal challenges backed by Labour MPs and a host of celebrities.
Michael Antonio White, convicted of murder in 2003, was taken off the flight after lawyers lodged a last-minute appeal.
Now in his 50s, he was sentenced to life in prison after shooting his victim six times in a drug deal gone wrong.
In all, 23 serious criminals submitted last-minute appeals – including human rights claims – which led to them avoiding deportation to Jamaica. They had been sentenced to a combined 156 years in jail.
Campaign: Naomi Campbell is supporting deportees
Thandie Newton, left, and Bond actress Naomie Harris, right
Appeal: Historian David Olusoga
Criminals they're backing
Knifeman Fitzroy Daley was deported yesterday – ten months after he managed to avoid being removed on an earlier flight.
Daley was jailed for ten years after stabbing a man to death in a row outside a pub. The Old Bailey was shown CCTV footage of Daley attacking Eric Paul, 50, from behind as he walked away after a ‘minor scuffle’ in East London just before Christmas in 2012.
The court heard Mr Paul was stabbed several times with a 6in kitchen knife. A jury acquitted Daley, then 36, of murder but found him guilty of manslaughter. Detective Inspector Andy Manning said: ‘Fitzroy Daley used brutal violence to settle what was essentially a minor dispute.’ He was initially due to be deported to Jamaica in February, but it was blocked by last-minute legal challenges.
Paul Bingham and Ricardo Forbes
Murderers Paul Bingham, 49, and Ricardo Forbes, 52, were also on the flight, nearly 18 years after being jointly convicted of a ‘brutal killing’.
The career criminals were handed life sentences for shooting crack cocaine dealer Harrington Jack at point-blank range. The pair went to his flat in North London to try to steal his drugs in 2002. They ordered him to turn out his pockets, and shot him in the chest when he refused.
They used the same silver Brocock airgun – which had been modified to shoot real bullets – to threaten customers when robbing a string of bookmakers. Bingham tied up the manager of a Berkshire betting shop – and his wife – before grabbing £3,100. Weeks later, they robbed a William Hill in South London. Bingham was linked to one raid by DNA on a half-eaten Snickers bar at the scene.
Murderer Michael Antonio White avoided deportation yesterday after a last-minute appeal by lawyers.
He and accomplice Hopeton Alexander Pink received life sentences at London’s Kingston Crown Court in 2003. They ambushed victims Sean Black and Robert Bayley – whom they believed owed them money – and shot Mr Black six times at close range, killing him.
Model Naomi Campbell, Line of Duty star Thandie Newton, James Bond actress Naomie Harris and historian David Olusoga were among celebrities who signed an open letter demanding none of the offenders be removed, at least for the time being.
Others who dodged deportation yesterday included the two rapists, two convicted of attempted murder and others convicted of supplying Class A drugs and possessing firearms.
Some or all are likely to be back on the streets in days as the Home Office can detain them only if there is a 'realistic prospect of imminent removal'. Earlier this week, Home Secretary Priti Patel said overturning the deportations risked 're-traumatising' their victims.
Only 13 criminals from an original list of 57 were on board a Home Office charter plane which took off from Stansted Airport in Essex in the early hours of yesterday.
They included two 'Yardies' who shot a man dead on his doorstep and a man who stabbed a 50-year-old to death after a scuffle outside a pub.
The remaining 21 originally targeted for removal had submitted earlier legal challenges or were taken off the passenger list for other reasons.
All 57 were born in Jamaica and none were UK citizens – but Labour campaigned to keep them in the UK.
Opposition MPs compared the deportation flight with the Windrush scandal, even though the Caribbean migrants who suffered awful injustice in that episode were entirely innocent and had committed no crimes.
Murderers Paul Bingham and Ricardo Forbes were deported on yesterday's 2am flight, 17 years after shooting crack dealer Harrington Jack at point-blank range.
Also deported yesterday on the chartered Boeing-757 was Fitzroy Daley, who killed Eric Paul after the pair fought outside an East London pub in 2012.
It was not known last night if the Home Office will attempt to deport murderer White at a later date.
Immigration Minister Chris Philp said: 'It is disappointing that specialist immigration law firms continued to use last-minute tactics to remove a significant number of offenders from this flight.
'Those we are attempting to remove have committed crimes which have a devastating impact on victims and their families.'
More than 60 opposition MPs, most from Labour, tried to stop the flight, saying of the criminals: 'Britain is their home.' MPs who signed the letter included ex-Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, former shadow home secretary Diane Abbott and ex-shadow chancellor John McDonnell.
Miss Patel said 'the idea of these deportations being halted at the last minute only serves to re-traumatise [their victims]'.Pressure group Detention Action said some of the criminals should not be deported as they had 'high blood pressure'.
Deportations to Jamaica have become politically charged since the Windrush scandal, in which scores of legal migrants from the Caribbean were wrongly removed from Britain.
Crackdown on migrant men posing as children
By David Barrett Home Affairs Correspondent for the Daily Mail
Adult migrants who claim to be children will face tougher checks, ministers announced yesterday.
The Home Office revealed plans to stop abuse of the legal regime used to determine asylum seekers' age.
It comes after a series of scandals in which grown men posed as children, and were taught in GCSE classes with 15-year-olds. Last week it emerged a balding male who appeared to be in his 40s was being taught in a Coventry school. Immigration Minister Chris Philp said mistakes posed 'very significant safeguarding risks' to children.
He told MPs: 'One of the areas we are looking at closely is whether we can legislate to clarify better in statute how these age assessment processes work.'