Taxpayers forked out thousands for foster care of Vietnamese ‘teenager’ trafficked into Britain but who was in fact 22
- Vietnamese woman was found in the toilets of raided Cheadle nail bar
- She was put into foster care after saying she was 16 and claimed asylum
- But four months later – after thousands spent on care – it emerged she was 22
- She has now been jailed for eight months but could still avoid deportation
Duong Trinh was put into foster care when she said she was 16 – but it later turned out she was 22 and she has now been jailed
Taxpayers stumped up the £500-a-week costs of keeping a Vietnamese woman in foster care before she was exposed as being a 22-year-old illegal immigrant.
Duong Trinh was picked up as part of an immigration raid on a nail bar in Cheadle, Staffordshire and claimed she was 16 years old.
The local council was therefore duty-bound to take her into foster care and she spent months in a foster home until her real age was uncovered.
She has now been jailed for eight months but could still avoid deportation due to sentencing rules.
The Stoke Sentinel reported that immigration officers found Trinh hiding in the toilets of Isabella’s Nail and Beauty, in Cheadle, Staffordshire, in March 2017.
She made an application for asylum in the UK after being put into costly foster care by Staffordshire County Council.
But a tip-off led police to contact Vietanese authorities, who provided fingerprints and a photograph that showed Trinh is in fact 22.
Trinh was found hiding in the toilets of Isabella’s Nail and Beauty, in Cheadle in March 2017
She has now pleaded guilty to perverting the course of public justice and was jailed for eight months this week.
Her sentence means that she not be sent for automatic deportation when she is release, as that only applies to foreign criminals who get a year or more in prison.
Judge Glenn added: ‘The sentence will not trigger automatic deportation. That will be a decision for other people in due course.’
Prosecutor Joanne Wallbanks had told Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court: ‘Due to her saying she was 16, she was placed into the care of social services. She was treated as a potential victim of trafficking. She made an application for asylum on May 7, 2017 and again used the false name and date of birth.’
Trinh’s lawyer Philip Beardwell told the court: ‘Were she to be returned to Vietnam she fears immediate and dangerous repercussions meted out on her because she has not paid the £20,000. She was trafficked. She has been manipulated and abused by others.’
Staffordshire County Council said it had no reason to believe Trinh was older than 16 when they were informed of her case.