Ignorance of the Law Excuses No One

This saying proved to be correct for Professor John Tulloch, a seventy year old university professor in the United Kingdom whose British citizenship had been cancelled without his knowledge. Born of British citizen parents, in a British colony, having a British brother, married to a British wife who bore him British children, he never imagined he could lose his British citizenship!

Professor Tulloch was born in India when it was still a colony of Great Britain. His father was then assigned there as a British Army officer. What he and his parents didn’t know was his British citizenship was labelled “British subject without citizenship” This fact was unknown to him.

Eventually, his family went back to the United Kingdom when he was three years old. Herein he grew up, studied and earned a degree at Cambridge University. Backed up with a postgraduate study at Sussex, he pursued a career in the academe of the United Kingdom. His earnings were taxed the same way as all British citizens are taxed.

Through the years, he had accumulated substantial assets and property while holding a series of posts in the British universities. He even got himself a passport in the normal way. His passport even states that the holder can take out a dual nationality without risking his British nationality!

As a university lecturer, he frequently travels and nearly died in the infamous 7/7 bombing. Had not been for his luggage, he probably would not have survived that incident having seated himself across the suicide bomber. He had been featured in the front page of the newspaper worldwide for having lived through the occurrence and was even visited by the Prince of Wales during his hospitalization.

Having been praised as a model of “resilience of the British people” having traced his British ancestry back to the 14th century; and a family lineage of service to the British service, Professor John Tulloch has full confidence of his British citizenship.

He eventually worked in Australia and was granted an Australian citizenship. As a result, he lost his British citizenship which he only learned when his inferior passport was confiscated upon his application for its renewal. Unable to enter the United Kingdom, he was forced to apply for a working visa being a professor for communications in Brunei and head of the School of Journalism at Cardiff University.

Due to this shocking event, Professor Tulloch went to the Home Office for assistance. To his dismay, he learned that he isn’t even qualified for naturalization! Nearing retirement, he had been informed that he can only stay in the country briefly as a tourist. To top it more, his brother is in bad health and would greatly appreciate his care if he resides in the United Kingdom.

An immigration officer at the Heathrow admits that he’s the type of person the country should be welcoming. Unfortunately, the United Kingdom immigration laws prevent this from happening. Lately, changes have also been implemented which affects a lot of people. Sadly, it had been noted that criminals stand a bigger chance to stay in the kingdom compared to people like Professor John Tulloch.

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