(EDITOR: Detained Voices has received a long report entitled “UK HOME OFFICE HUMANITY CRIMES AGAINST AFRICANS & ASIANS” written by people held inside The Verne IRC. It will be published in sections, currently with some specific details redacted. Where text is removed, it is replaced by [ ]. Names of people detained have been anonymised.)
32) CHRONOLOGICAL STATEMENT OF MR TK DEATH AT IRC THE VERNE ON 06/08/2015 IS AS FOLLOWS:
i. IRC the Verne – Death of Mr TK, a Ugandan national, 30 years of age. On 05/08/2015 at 16:30, he was refused his medication by the healthcare staff who told him he was late. He was upset as the medication helps him deal with indefinite detention. The following day 06/08/2015 at 08:00, staff found him dead with [ ]. Mr K was suffering from severe depression, panic attacks, mental health issues and was dependant on medication. He went to the medical hatch twice a day to collect his meds, at 8:30 and 16:00 without fail.
ii. Mr K’s depression got worse after staff at The Verne started controlling how much of his own money he was allowed to spend. He hated that treatment and would complain to anyone who knew him. The staff only allowed him to spend £25 a week of his own money and that was too much controlling of an individual. The claimed that he was a target to drug dealers.
iii. Doctors have written to the Home Office about his health and recommended release as he was a vulnerable detainee. The Home Office Caseworker wrote to Mr K stating that he was ‘pretending’, ‘faking it’. He must be faking it and/or pretending his death! Home Office Caseworkers are not human beings, they treat detainees like the worst scum on earth (excuse my French).
iv. Mr K was an asylum seeker from Uganda. His mother lives in London. His asylum claim was refused and was told that he can only appeal from outside the UK. How can someone who is fleeing persecution appeal asylum refusal from the country they are fleeing persecution from. We cannot appeal when we are dead, or can we do that in the UK? Die first then appeal Home Office asylum refusal as requested for every asylum seeker who have been refused asylum? To make matters worse for Mr K, the Home Office threatened him with deportation.
v. On the [ ]/08/2015, we wrote a memo to the Home Office and faxed it to: The Home Office (Case Management), Fax: [ ] reads as follows:
Re: The Death of Mr TK on 06/08/2015 at IRC The Verne, Portland, Dorset, DT5 1EQ.
We write this statement as a collective. We are the occupants of [ ]. We are very saddened of what happened to one of our fellow detainee and friend. This is a very traumatic experience for any detainee, we need urgent help, be it medical attention and counselling. So far the Verne IRC has not done anything to help or talk to any of us. We are traumatised, disturbed and shocked of what happened. He was a nice person and always smiling with us. His death has affected us in a way that we cannot explain or write here. We really want to talk to someone to help get us over it please? Would you kindly please refer us to counselling and consider our release on compassionate grounds? (Signed document not included for anonymity reasons)
vi. It is sad that no official came to see anyone of us who shared the same landing with Mr K. No official came to visit and check how badly affected, shocked and traumatised the occupants on Mr K’s landing (Room [ ]) coped with his death. Nobody cares if a refugee, asylum seeker or illegal immigration dies in UK detentions.
vii. It was only after the Home Office have received our faxed memo that we received letters from The Verne Acting Manager Mr David Bourne on the 12th August 2015 as a response to the memo we singed and sent to the Home Office (see above vi). Mr Bourne mentioned that he was responding to the memo dated 6th August and addressed to the Home Office Case Management, following Detainee Information Notice Number 033/2015. The home Office did not respond to our signed Memo. They really don’t care about us. (We will be pleased to fax you the letter from Mr David Bourne, if requested).
viii. Mr PF, a Jamaican national spoke to senior Verne Officers on the day Mr K was found dead. Mr PF wanted to see the detective so he can tell them what happened at the Verne Healthcare the day before Mr K’s death. The senior officers told Mr PF they will contact the detective. Mr PF explained to the officers that he was present at Healthcare on the 5th August 2015 (around 16:30) when nurses refuse to give Mr K his medication telling him that he was late. Mr K responded that he was asleep and apologise for being late but the nurses were not having none of it. Mr K was denied his important medication and the following day he was found dead.
ix. A witness like Mr PF should have been given a chance to talk to the detective in order to help them with their enquiries. Surprisingly, two days later Mr PF was transferred to Brookhouse. Mr PF had serious medical attention and was suffering from hernia. The doctor at the Verne stated that he was unfit to travel and that he needed an urgent medical attention; ‘in simple terms Mr PF needed very important surgery and was not fit to travel long distance, let alone fly UK to Jamaica’. We have not heard from Mr PF after he was transferred to Brookhouse. We think he has been deported to Jamaica in an effort to cover-up The Verne murder of Mr K. Mr PF is a very important witness to the enquiry of Mr K and should be brought back for police questioning.