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Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

Old Dec 23rd 2015, 4:34 am
  #1  
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Default Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/dec/22/us-stops-british-muslim-family-flight-disneyland-david-cameron

What's going on here? Have I missed something? How can these people stop people getting on a plane at a uk airport when they already have visas? Escorting them out of the airports...
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:10 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

CBP has had staff at Gatwick and Heathrow for ages, they're the people who check the passenger manifests. I take it these people were caught up in the changes to the VWP and were dual citizens of Pakistan or somewhere on the "nasty" list. They didn't have visas.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:12 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

They have been at UK airports for years at least 12. Have you not taken seen how many times I have posted that I worked with them at Heathrow. They are USCIS, CBP and from the Legal Attache at the Embassy.

It is very simple they just tell the airline the people are not authorized to travel to the USA and if the airline carries them they will be refused entry and the airline fined. SB, or whatever it is called these days, work very closely with them, and they are in the UK on an official baises

Last edited by lansbury; Dec 23rd 2015 at 5:21 am.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:17 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

They have FAA Air Marshalls too who stop over. I used to know one. And that was back before 9/11 when there were only a few dozen of them. And then DHS took it over and as with everything else they touch, turned it into a massive botch job.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:27 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

The Sky Marshals do not stop at the airport or have anything to do with passenger screening. There is a very detailed protocol for how Sky Marshals are processed.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:35 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

They do stop over, depends on the flight schedule, like I said, I used to know one. They leave their guns in lock-up, it's the same room where the airport AFOs store their guns (or it was). Apparently nowadays they're given very tight schedules but back before 9/11 it was much more leisurely. Even then, the guy I knew quit because he'd had enough of it.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:50 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

If by stop over you mean they don't fly straight back, that is correct. They leave the airport, they have nothing to do with the airport operation of US flights. As to what else happens it was my job to know and I am most certainly not commenting on an Internet forum.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 8:03 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

The UK has similar people in place in Europe and the US.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 10:58 am
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

And back to PF's post #1, a visa most certainly does not give any right whatsoever to enter the US, it just gives the holder the right to ask to be allowed in, and obviously it gives the CBP immigration officer some prescreening information. But a visa can be cancelled at any time with no notice, and a visa holder can be denied entry pretty much on the whim of the CBP officer.

Only a US citizen has a right to enter the US. Full stop.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 1:53 pm
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
Only a US citizen has a right to enter the US. Full stop.
But it might be difficult to enforce that right, if one is on the no-fly list.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 2:40 pm
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

Originally Posted by FlyingDutchman6666 View Post
But it might be difficult to enforce that right, if one is on the no-fly list.
True, there was a case a few years ago of a U.S. citizen who couldn't return to the U.S. because he was on the no fly list. I think he was stuck in his country of origin, Yemen or somewhere in North Africa, I can't remember the details.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 2:58 pm
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

The US has can refuse entry to anyone (except most US citizens) on a pretty arbitrary basis. I have an issue with US officials doing that on UK soil without any explanation, but I'm resigned to today's realities. To me an equally worrying issue is the way the UK Government breaks up the families of UK citizens who's immediate relatives are not also UK citizens. If we are outraged by US travel bans we should also be outraged at the restrictions placed on UK citizens just wanting to live with their family in the UK.

Last edited by nun; Dec 23rd 2015 at 3:01 pm.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 3:17 pm
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

The man (from the family) himself claims it was UK officials who refused him. He states that the UK official informed him that US officials had instructed the UK officials to refuse the family. No mention of how this was communicated, by mouth or electronically.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 4:58 pm
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

Originally Posted by nun View Post
The US has can refuse entry to anyone (except most US citizens) on a pretty arbitrary basis. I have an issue with US officials doing that on UK soil without any explanation, but I'm resigned to today's realities.
Better that they stop them from getting on the plane rather than waiting until they land in the US to refuse them entry.
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Old Dec 23rd 2015, 5:02 pm
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Default Re: Who are these "us officials" at uk airports?

Originally Posted by kimilseung View Post
The man (from the family) himself claims it was UK officials who refused him. He states that the UK official informed him that US officials had instructed the UK officials to refuse the family. No mention of how this was communicated, by mouth or electronically.
At a point before check in opens the reservation list is sent electronically to the US. It is there that it is run through the various checks the US wishes to do. The airline either get the all clear or they are told certain passengers need further checking or cannot fly. The US officials at the airport can either liaise direct with the airline staff or their colleagues in SB* or both to resolve any issues. Depending on the information coming back from the US depends on how things are handled. Once the flight closes the airline then sends the manifest electronically to the US as confirmation of who is traveling.

The US officials came to the UK originally because in the early days the US no fly list was so difficult to use to properly identify those on it it was driving people in my office nuts trying to resolve the airlines questions. So we got them over to help, and it work so well they are still here.

If it was me I would rather be told in the UK I wasn't traveling then get over to the States and be turned back.

* Not sure who has a separate SB these days and who doesn't. Just as I retired SB and Anti Terrorist Sqd in the Met were amalgamated to form Counter Terrorist Command, so not sure what the guys doing Port Control call themselves these days.
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