Faizel Patel
Senior Digital Journalist
2 minute read
13 Jun 2022
12:56 pm

Russia-born actress deported after applying for asylum in SA to attend party

Faizel Patel

Ieva Andrejevaite claimed she wanted to apply for asylum because of the war in Ukraine.

Ieva Andrejevaite. Photo: Twitter

A Lithuanian actress has been deported after she tried to abuse South Africa’s immigration laws.

Ieva Andrejevaite, who was born in Russia, arrived at the Cape Town International Airport in a private jet without a visa on 28 April.

Home Affairs spokesperson Siya Qoza said Andrejevaite sought to abuse South Africa’s refugee management regime when she fabricated a story of wanting to apply for asylum because of the “war in Ukraine”.

“After [first being refused] entry, she then lied to immigration officials making up a story of wanting to apply for asylum. As a result of our asylum seeker laws, immigration officials’ hands were tied and they were required to let her into the country so that she could apply for asylum within five days.”

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Qoza said Andrejevaite was issued with an asylum seeker visa in terms of the Immigration Act 13 of 2002.

“At no stage during her stay in the country did Ms Andrejevaite attempt to apply for asylum. As such, she became an illegal foreigner, as defined in the Immigration Act, because the five-day period lapsed. Instead, images of her attending a party in Cape Town hosted by Mr Rob Hersov surfaced on numerous publications and social media platforms.”

Qoza said Andrejevaite subsequently launched legal proceedings in the Western Cape High Court under case making further disparaging comments about South Africa, the Department of Home Affairs and its immigration officials.

“She also lied under oath as parts of her founding affidavit were clearly fabricated. The department opposed the application and set out clearly the factual position of the department exposing the lies in her affidavit and the fact that she was now an illegal foreigner.”

Qoza said the Western Cape High Court ordered Andrejevaite to apologise to South Africans, the Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi and the Department of Home Affairs officials.

“She made a formal apology to all the listed parties on the same day. A copy of which is attached to this statement. Ms Andrejevaite also formally withdrew her ill-fated application after accepting that she had lied in it and agreed to pay the costs incurred by the department which opposed the farcical application.”

Motsoaledi has instructed the department to expeditiously recover all money due to the state as a result of Andrejevaite’s bogus application.

Qoza said Andrejevaite was formally processed for deportation on 5 June 2022 and declared an undesirable person by immigration officials.

Andrejevaite is now prohibited from visiting South Africa for a period of five years.

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