EU Court Rule Italy Cannot Revoke Welfare Benefits of Violent Migrant

EU Court Rule Italy Cannot Revoke Welfare Benefits of Violent Migrant

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has ruled that Italy cannot expel a migrant from its reception system, even if the migrant in question has been accused of violence.

The CJEU ruling regards a case of a Senegalese asylum seeker in the Italian reception system who had his welfare benefits revoked by the prefecture of Florence, which deprived him of handouts after he was accused of a violent attack on a railway worker.

The migrant, who still has an open criminal case ongoing, complained to the Administrative Court of Tuscany, which ruled in favour of the migrant, but the State Attorney’s office took the case to the CJEU in appeal, Il Giornale reports.

According to the CJEU ruling, the revocation of food, housing, and daily expenses for the Senegalese man “constitutes a disproportionate sanction, because it is detrimental to human dignity,” even if the man is accused of criminal violence.

The court ruled that a 2015 Italian law “is in contrast with European legislation because among the sanctions for violent migrants it includes, in fact, the possibility of revoking the material conditions of reception.”

The ruling comes as Italy has seen a surge of illegal immigrant arrivals this year, with most entering the Italian migrant reception system after arriving in the country.

According to populist League (Lega) leader Matteo Salvini, however, very few of the migrants who arrived last year actually qualified for refugee status, with the majority having their claims rejected by Italian authorities and just 15 per cent being recognised as legitimate refugees.

Ahead of next month’s national elections, Salvini has campaigned on the issue of mass migration, noting that in July of this year alone, more illegals arrived in Italy than in the entire year of 2019.

“In July of this year, we exceeded the landings recorded throughout 2019. We can’t wait to return to the government to take care of work, security, and defence of Italy,” said the former interior minister.

The centre-right alliance of Salvini’s League, Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy, and Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia looks set to win a majority of seats in the Italian parliament next month, according to forecasts.