William James McCaffery was 18 months old when he and his parents were issued a Canada permanent residency visa, after his family moved here moved from Glasgow, Scotland. At age 45, he has lived in Canada for more than 40 years and always maintained his Canada permanent resident status, but never received Canadian citizenship.

Now McCaffery sits in the Lindsay (Ontario) jail, awaiting deportation back to Glasgow, Scotland. Meanwhile the rest of his family, including three daughters who are all Canadian citizens, sit and wait.

McCaffery has lived in Canada for his entire life. He has no ties, family members or connections in Scotland, or elsewhere outside of Canada. The real problem is that McCaffery is being deported on conviction of 15 offences, committed here in Canada. Most of these offenses involve drug possession, failure to appear, thefts and assaults and at least some of them constitute serious criminality, which is why he is being deported by Canadian immigration.

Foreign nationals who have convictions on their record may be criminally inadmissible to Canada and require either a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) or Criminal Rehabilitation, to enter. If the offences were committed in Canada, the foreigner must apply for a Canada pardon in order to be considered admissible to Canada by Canadian immigration.

Canada permanent residents can have their Canada permanent residency removed on grounds of criminality, if they have been convicted of an offence and if the maximum sentence under a Federal statute is 10 years or more. This is precisely the situation Mr. McCaffery finds himself in.

While McCaffery’s offences are serious in nature, his family is trying to appeal the deportation order on the grounds that he is really a product of Canada, as he has never lived anywhere else. Ontario Police claim that McCaffery is part of a crime ring that shoplifted goods from stores in the Keswick area, just north of Toronto.

If McCaffery had applied and obtained Canadian citizenship before this crime spree, he would not likely be facing deportation at this point. Canada does not deport its citizens, criminality is only a concern for those who have not yet applied and received Canadian citizenship.

Canadian citizens benefit from all of Canada’s rights and privileges and Canada permanent residents who are eligible for citizenship, but who have not yet applied, should consider the protection that a Canadian passport offers. 

For more information about immigrating to Canada, contact FWCanada – Canadian Immigration Law Firm

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