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Section 25(2) of the Act defines an immigration law as a law which has effect in a member State and which controls, in respect of some or all persons who are not nationals of that State, entitlement to enter, transit or be in the State.This definition has been clarified and reinforced by the Court of Appeal in the case of  EWCA Crim 435 which held that section 2 Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants) Act 2004 is not an immigration law for the purposes of section 25(2).Officers from Immigration authorities have been alerted to name the specific breach on the MG3 when referring cases to the CPS and to note it on the charging report (MG5).In , the Court expressed surprise that there was no reference to the particular immigration law said to have been breached in the particulars of offence in the indictment, as the defendant is entitled to know which particular law he is being accused of breaching.
This does not apply to anything done by a person acting on behalf of an organisation, which aims to assist asylum-seekers, and does not charge for its services: section 25A(3) Immigration Act 1971.
Section 25(5) of the Act was replaced by section 30(1) of the UK Borders Act 2007 to confirm that the offence applies to acts committed in the United Kingdom, regardless of the nationality of the perpetrator, as well as acts committed overseas. Aggravating features include repeat offending; committed for financial gain; involving strangers rather than family members; a high degree of planning / sophistication; the number of immigrants involved and the level of involvement of the offender.
The offence is an either-way offence and the maximum sentence on indictment is up to 14 years' imprisonment. For guidance on non-commercial facilitation, see  EWHC 1094 (Admin) - see statutary defences: section 31 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.
Under section 25(1) a person commits an offence if he: The offence is defined broadly enough to encompass both the old offences of assisting illegal entry (whether by smuggling someone in a vehicle or by providing false documents for presentation at a port) or assisting someone to remain by deception (for example by entering into a sham marriage) and other forms of assistance which facilitate a breach of the immigration laws.
In cases where prosecutors are considering a charge of conspiracy to commit section 25(1), the prosecution must prove knowledge and intention by the defendants and not merely "reasonable cause for believing" that the act would facilitate the commission of a breach of Immigration law (  2 AC 18).