Report finds tens of thousands of bogus students issued Tier 4 visas
29 March 2012
For concise and recent immigration information watch our news.In a new study released this week by the UK National Audit Office it was found that up to 50,000 bogus students may have been improperly issued UK Tier 4 visas. These student admissions took place after the new points-based visa system was introduced in 2008.
- 11 March 2014 UK government \'withholds immigration report'
- 11 March 2014 Senior Conservative says UK can still meet immigration target
- 06 March 2014 UK immigration committee recommends Tier 1 visa-auction
- 05 March 2014 British employers desperate for Romanians
Although, immigration officials have taken measures to tighten the system up by increasing checks on colleges and applicants, the National Audit Office found that immigration controls are still lacking. Colleges have also notified the UK Border Agency more than 60,000 times of students not attending studies in breach of their visa conditions during the 18 months up to October 2011.
Official auditors claim that many of these individuals are still in the country, as UK immigration staff do not regard removing them as a "priority".
"This is one of the most shocking reports of poor management leading to abuse that I have seen," said Margaret Hodge, chairman of the Public Accounts Committee. "In the first year, student visas increased by one third, as 40,000 to 50,000 individuals probably used this route to work rather than to study. We will need to ask some important questions of those responsible."
The report follows a series of scandals surrounding the UK Border Agency over its immigration controls. Specifically, last year, it emerged that the agency had relaxed passport and visa checks on foreigners at UK ports and airports without obtaining ministerial approval.
Under the new points-based system, Tier 4 visa acceptance relied much more heavily on students being "sponsored" by colleges and universities. It soon emerged that bogus colleges were accrediting thousands of visa applications.
The National Audit Office found that only a third of colleges had been inspected by the UK Border Agency to make sure they were genuine before the system came into force.
UK immigration minister Damian Green stated the Government had introduced "radical reforms in order to stamp out abuse and restore order to the uncontrolled student visa system we inherited".
If you would like to apply for a UK visa WorkPermit.com can help. WorkPermit.com is a specialist visa consultancy with over twenty years of experience dealing with visa applications. We can help with a wide range of visa applications to your country of choice. Please feel free to contact us for further details.