A WEST YORKSHIRE man says his lesbian sister will be killed if she is sent back to Jamaica and is urging immigration officials to reconsider a decision to deport her.
Nestfield Lopez, 24, from Leeds, told The Voice that homophobia in the Caribbean country is rife and claims that his sibling will be targeted because of her sexuality.
He said: ”We all know what Jamaicans think of gays.”
“We’ve got terrorists here that are making suicide bombs. They’ve been in prison, they come out and they can’t deport them because of human rights. What about her human rights? That’s the frustrating thing about it,” he continued.
His sister, 22-year-old, Coletane Lopez, was detained by the UK Border Agency on March 20 after her human rights application was denied.
Acting on legal advice, she had gone to Lunar House in Croydon, Surrey, where immigration claims are processed, to seek asylum for protection, but was handcuffed and transferred to Yarl’s Wood Detention Centre in Bedfordshire, where she is currently awaiting deportation.
Mr Lopez, who was unaware that his sister was gay until last December, has begun a petition to stop the process but claims her health is deteriorating day by day.
“We had a visit with her and she’s lost loads of weight. She hasn’t been eating. She’s been worried. At one point she wanted to commit suicide. She said I’m going to kill myself because if I get sent home, I’m going to get killed anyway.”
Her deportation has been placed in the fast track system, which means she can be removed from the country within four to seven days of her case being decided.
The siblings first came to the UK with their family in 2000. Last year their parents were removed and sent back to Jamaica, but Mr Lopez, who is married with two young children, has been granted the right to remain because his partner is a British national.
Mr Lopez says that his sister will have nowhere to go if she is returned to Jamaica because even his parents refuse to accept his sister because of her sexuality.
He said: “Every time I speak to my dad, we have an argument. He says, ‘have you not thrown her out yet? Don’t give her any money and don’t look after her. You should choke her and kill her’. That’s what he’s saying to me. I’m like, ‘that’s your daughter!’ But he says, ‘Oh no. I don’t have no daughter anymore. That’s what I have to deal with!”
The Voice contacted the UK Border Agency for their response. A spokesperson said: “We do not routinely comment on individual cases.”