Finland deports record number in 2015

A total of 279 foreigners were deported from Finland last year; a third of that figure were deported for committing crimes. Insufficient income and divorce were also reasons given.

Maahanmuuttoviraston kyltti.
The number of deported foreigners has been growing steadily since 2009. Image: Vesa Moilanen / Lehtikuva

The number of non-Finnish individuals deported from the country has steadily risen since the fatal shooting in Espoo's Sello shopping mall in 2009. Ibrahim Shkupolli, an Albanian national who entered Finland as a refugee, shot four employees in the centre's Prisma supermarket.

Shkupolli's worked in a warehousing company that delivered to the Prisma supermarket chain. His residence permit had been renewed despite his having a criminal record.

"After the Sello shooting deporting was made easier," says Olli Koskipirtti of the Immigration Service.

The number of deportations rose from 80 instances to 216 in the year 2009, and the figure has continued to rise.

Roughly third found guilty of crimes

Koskipirtti says that about one third of all those deported were served with the decision due to committing crimes in Finland during their stay.

The rest of those who are sent away receive their dismissed for other reasons, the most common of which include not having enough funds to stay in the country or having one's family ties to a Finnish citizen cut due to divorce.

Police made 380 deportation propositions to the Finnish Immigration Service last year. That is less than in 2014 and 2013 even though the number of people actually exiled was record-high.

That means that more propositions lead to deportations than before.

"The policework has gotten better in this respect. The propositions are better justified so they are more likely to end in deportation," Korkipirtti says.

No statistics yet exist on the 279 deportation decisions, meaning that not all those individuals who have been deported have necessarily left the country.

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