Lawangeen Abdulrahimzai (Credit: Dorset Police)
24 January 2023
In 2018, a 16-year-old boy called Lawangeen Abdulrahimzai shot dead two men in Serbia with a burst of eighteen bullets from a Kalashnikov automatic rifle. Four years later he murdered again – inflicting a fatal stab wound on 21-year-old Thomas Roberts. Roberts, whose ambition was to join the Royal Marines, was killed because he had tried to break up an argument between Abdulrahimzai and another man on a street in Bournemouth.
Abdulrahimzai was yesterday found guilty of murder. During the trial, consultant forensic psychiatrist Dr Gauruv Malhan said the defendant exhibited characteristics consistent with borderline personality disorder. After the verdict, Abdulrahimzai was described by the Crown Prosecution Service as a ‘violent and dangerous man’. He made money in England by street fighting, pocketing £100 a bout.
Despite his many personality flaws, Abdulrahimzai hoodwinked the UK authorities, arriving in Britain in 2019 having been refused asylum in Norway. The Afghan, convicted by a Serbian court in absentia for the 2018 murder (which was reportedly linked to a migrant trafficking network) crossed the Channel in a ferry from Cherbourg and, on arrival in England, claimed he was 14. Home Office officials apparently harboured doubts about this declaration. But with the help of immigration lawyers, Abdulrahimzai avoided further investigation into his background.
This scandal has echoes of the Emad Al Swealmeen case; he was the man whose bomb detonated prematurely before he could cause carnage at a Liverpool women’s hospital in 2021. It was subsequently revealed that the 32-year-old Iraqi had claimed on arrival in Britain in 2014 to be a Syrian refugee; the Home Office didn’t believe him but, nonetheless, he was allowed to remain in Britain.
Abdulrahimzai was described by the Crown Prosecution Service as a ‘violent and dangerous man’.
How many other Abdulrahimzais and Emad Al Swealmeens are there in Britain? It would be a surprise if there weren’t one or two, given the large numbers of young men that have flooded into the country in recent years.
A report in today’s Le Figaro breaks down the fifty nationalities of the 45,696 migrants who made it across the Channel into Britain last year. Of that number, 11,238 came from Albania, 8,106 from Afghanistan, 5,082 from Iran and 4,042 from Iraq. Other nationalities well represented were Indians, Kuwaitis, Turks and Egyptians. As Frontex, the EU’s border agency, detailed last week, 90 per cent of the 330,000 people who entered Europe illegally last year were male.
The number of migrants who crossed into the UK on small boats would have been far greater but for the hard work of the French police and border authorities, who last year intercepted nearly 60 per cent of 2,000 attempted Channel crossings.
France’s Central Border Police Directorate arrested 470 suspected criminals last year as it dismantled 325 organised networks of illegal immigrants across the country, a 7 per cent increase on the number the directorate took down the year before.
On some nights, as many as 800 French police and border officials are deployed along a 75-mile stretch of the Channel’s coast, from Dunkirk in the east to the Bay of the Somme in the west; illegal immigration networks have even been discovered as far west as Ouistreham, one of the D-Day landing beaches, 200 miles west of Calais.
In an interview with Le Figaro, Xavier Delrieu, a divisional commissioner at the Office for Combating Illegal Trafficking, explained that the most common route for migrants into Europe is through the Western Balkans. ‘The important thing is for them to set foot in the Schengen area and then apply for asylum so as not to be turned back,’ said Delrieu. Last year in France there were 131,00 asylum claims, up 27 per cent on 2021.
Many come from Afghanistan. They seek a better life but some fail to adapt; in the past year, several young Afghans have been accused or convicted of serious sexual offences across France.
Those Afghans claiming to be minors are handed to France’s Child Welfare Agency at an average annual cost of 50,000 euros per head. According to Le Figaro, some ‘take advantage of their status as unaccompanied minors to commit burglaries or muggings without risking prison’.
France has set up a specialised unit to investigate the authenticity of asylum seekers who claim to be minors, and they are recruiting more personnel to target the trafficking networks. They have also set up a cyber team dedicated to tracking the organisers, who use social media platforms such as TikTok to attract migrants and charge 3,000 euros (£2,600) on average for a passage across the Channel.
The French police are often portrayed by British commentators and politicians as idlers, standing around on beaches as another dingy full of migrants sets off across the Channel. That is unjust. The real laziness is in the thinking of those well-intentioned but gullible people who believe that everyone who enters Europe and claims asylum is a victim. They are not. Some are downright vicious and it’s time governments began to protect their people from the Lawangeen Abdulrahimzais of the world.