FOI request detail

Emails with and about immigration enforcement

Request ID: FOI-0098-2223
Date published: 28 April 2022

You asked

a) all emails or other documentation of correspondence between TfL staff and Immigration Enforcement during 2020 and 2021. Emails from Immigration Enforcement will probably be from an email address ending in "" and contain "Immigration Enforcement" in their signature. b) any other emails, documents or files that refer to "immigration raid" or "immigration enforcement" or "immigration, compliance & enforcement" during 2020 and 2021.

We answered

Our Ref:         FOI-0098-2223

Thank you for your request received on 12 April 2022 asking for correspondence regarding immigration enforcement.

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act and our information access policy. I can confirm we do hold the information you require.

Unfortunately, to provide the information you have requested would exceed the ‘appropriate limit’ of £450 set by the Freedom of Information (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004.

Under section 12 of the FOI Act, we are not obliged to comply with a request if we estimate that the cost of determining whether we hold the information, locating and retrieving it and extracting it from other information would exceed the appropriate limit. This is calculated at £25 per hour for every hour spent on the activities described.

We have estimated that it would cost over £450 to provide a response to your current request. This is because it is estimated that it would take in excess of 18 working hours to retrieve and compile the information you have requested.

When requests for email correspondence are received the FOI Case Management team can conduct company wide email searches using keywords, dates and email addresses. The more specific a requester can be as to what they are looking for, the more we can narrow the search and therefore stand a better chance of a more relevant or focused result. A search will then return an amount of ‘hits’ which potentially contain information relating to the search terms used. Each ‘hit’ is a single email, although that email will often consist of a chain of emails containing the search term at least once.

We have done an initial search for all emails held by TfL sent/received and this has returned over 74,000 hits. A brief review of the results indicates that a large number of these emails are likely to be of little interest to you. For example, “immigration enforcement” was referred to very generally within much wider communications regarding Covid-19. However, we would still need to manually review all of the emails identified by the search in order to extract and collate the relevant emails.

To help bring the cost of responding to your request within the £450 limit, you may wish to consider narrowing its scope so that we can more easily locate, retrieve and extract the information you are seeking. For example, if you have specific questions regarding immigration enforcement these may be easier to provide information on rather than a wide email search. Additionally, we recently responded to a FOI request regarding the enforcement operation that occurred last year at Walthamstow Station. The response is published on our website:

If you want to refine your request or make a Freedom of Information Act request in future, please bear in mind that the Freedom of Information Act allows you to request recorded information held by us. You should identify the information that you want as clearly and concisely as you can, specifying the types of document that you are looking for. For instance you may find it more beneficial to request information about a specific incident(s) of concern or information such as policy documents rather than broad email requests which can incorporate significant volumes of material, much of which will be of little interest.

Although your request can take the form of a question, rather than a request for specific documents, we do not have to answer your question if it would require the creation of new information or the provision of a judgement, explanation, advice or opinion that was not already recorded at the time of your request.

Please note that we will not be taking further action until we receive your revised request.

In the meantime, if you have any queries or would like to discuss your request, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.

Yours sincerely

Gemma Jacob
Senior FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

[email protected]

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