sun 20 feb 2011 01:28:15 witte de withstraat
ranjit edward story
i just saw an episode of the VARA tv show 'ombudsman' about a guy named ranjit edward. he is originally from sri lanka, lives in sweden, did some IT work in oman. on his way back home he had a 3 hour layover in amsterdam. the marechausee told him he needed a visa to enter the EU -- with which he disagreed because he lives in sweden.
he wanted a lawyer, but the only way to get one would be if he applied for asylum in nederland. so he agreed to ask for asylum just as a formality. he landed in the detention center with asylum seekers for 5 weeks. then his sri lankan passport ran out, and he was declared an illegal alien in the country that had refused to let him leave. one complication after another, bureaucratic ignorance and mishandling, a lawyer that didn't react, etc etc.
it was about 18 months before he finally -- with help from the ombudsman, and embarrassed apologies from the head of the immigration service -- was able to fly out of schiphol.