Six “serious or persistent” criminals have had their applications to live in the UK after Brexit refused amid the finalisation of requests made by almost 2.5 million EU citizens.
More than 2.7 million applications had been submitted to the EU Settlement Scheme in December and 2.45 million of those have now been granted permission to continue living and working in Britain.
It leaves a backlog of more than 300,000 applicants awaiting a decision.
EU citizens can be granted permanent leave to remain in the country, known as settled status, or temporary leave to remain, called pre-settled status.
If they obtain pre-settled status they will need to reapply for permanent permission at a later date.
Overall, six valid applications have so far been rejected on “suitability grounds”, the Home Office report said.
This means they did not meet suitability criteria and were denied because the applicants were “serious or persistent criminals” with a history of crimes such as murder, rape and grievous bodily harm.
The applicants are said to be already behind bars in the UK or have been deported and are seeking to return.
The Prime Minister's official spokesman praised the EU Settlement Scheme saying it was “providing certainty to millions of EU citizens across the country”.
He went on to urge other EU countries to do the same for UK nationals living abroad.
“It's now time for EU countries to step up and make the same generous offer to the UK nationals who live among them.”
But pro-EU campaigners have reiterated concerns over rising numbers of EU citizens being granted temporary rather than permanent leave to remain.
They have claimed some were eligible for settled status instead.
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