When the last Immigration Bill was going through Parliament, I remember that one of the key government arguments against a time limit for immigration detention was their contention that such detention was used for foreign criminals. Indeed they refer to such people as Foreign National Offenders.
Yet they are in fact time-served prisoners. They will have served their prison sentence for their offence, but under the terms of the 2007 UK Borders Act any non-British person, who is sentenced to 12 months or more in prison, is automatically liable for deportation. So having served their term, they then remain detained but for no specified period.
We recently discussed this issue within the Forum, and we have published our policy paper on time-served prisoners. Do take a look at our paper, and see why we have concerns about how such time-served prisoners are treated and our recommendations for change.