Migrants 'offered language certificates for £500'

Language certificates that offer a gateway to British citizenship are being sold illegally for £500, according to an investigation by the Daily Mail.

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Miliband: Immigration system 'turning into a shambles'

Labour leader Ed Miliband has said the the government's handling of the immigration system is "turning into a shambles", following reports that language certificates that offer smooth entry in the UK are being sold illegally for £500.

"We want tough controls, we want the right controls to be in place," he said. "I think we need urgent answers on what has been going on here."

Home Office vows action over migrant fraud fears

Home Office minister James Brokenshire told the Daily Mail the government will take the "strongest possible action" against anyone found to be abusing the rules after a language school allegedly offered to fraudulently sell certificates to migrants.

The Home Office takes any allegation of fraud extremely seriously and we have already begun a full investigation. We will take the strongest possible action against anyone who is found to have abused the rules - including the possibility of criminal prosecutions for fraud.

This ESOL certificate is just one element of a wide range of evidence required by individuals applying for settlement and citizenship. Nobody can gain a UK visa on the strength of this qualification alone.

– James Brokenshire, Home Office Minister

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Language school boss 'shocked' at fraud allegations

A director of the firm that allegedly offered to fraudelently sell language certificates to migrants has said the practice was confined to one branch, where tests have now been suspended..

"I'm shocked that this has happened and am very concerned as to how it could have happened," Learn Pass Succeed's Uzwan Ghani was quoted in the newspaper as saying.

"We are very thorough when it comes to checking IDs of candidates before they take the test, so I will have to investigate which of the centres the test was taken in and who the assessor was.

"I've been in the business for five years and I've never come across something like this and I would not allow it. It is wrong and ridiculous."

LPS was not available for comment when contacted by ITV News.

Migrants 'offered language certificates for £500'

Applicants must prove they can speak English to a 'basic' level to apply successfully for citizenship. Credit: Tim Goode/EMPICS Entertainment

Language certificates that offer a gateway to British citizenship are being sold illegally for £500, according to an investigation by the Daily Mail.

The newspaper claims that Learn Pass Succeed, a London language school, offers migrants a "guaranteed pass" on the Entry 3 Level ESOL exam, with staff allegedly taking the tests in place of applicants who are not even required to attend.

The exams are designed to test migrants' ability to speak English to a basic level and are a requirement for anyone who wishes to apply to be a British citizen

The Home Office has announced an urgent investigation in response to the claims, while the school has since been suspended by the examining body, the Mail reports.

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