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No Danish return: Expelled 'family-oriented' Palestinian 'gangbanger' loses appeal Open in fullscreen

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No Danish return: Expelled 'family-oriented' Palestinian 'gangbanger' loses appeal

Mahmoud Salem first travelled to Denmark in 1993, and lived in Odense [Archive/Getty]

Date of publication: 27 April, 2017

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A Palestinian man deported from Denmark following convictions including drug trafficking and carrying arms has lost an appeal to return to the country and be reunited with his family.

The European Court of Human Rights has backed a decision by Danish authorities to expel a Palestinian man convicted of smuggling thousands of dollars worth of cocaine and hashish, in addition to charges of carrying arms.

Mahmoud Khalil Salem was deported from Denmark to Lebanon over two years ago, following a Supreme Court decision to expel him from the country for life. 

Salem had issued an appeal against his deportation to the European Court of Human Rights stating that it constituted a "breach of his right to respect for family life, due to his separation from his eight children".

This appeal was rejected on Tuesday. 

Salem first arrived in Denmark in 1993, at the age of 23, marrying a Danish national of Lebanese descent a year later, after which he was granted a residency permit. 

He was later granted asylum in 2000, and according to The Copenhagen Post, began claiming benefits in 2004.

However, in June 2010 Salem - also known as "Fez Fez" - was convicted of 18 criminal offences. 

These included charges of drug trafficking, drug dealing, coercion by violence and threats, blackmail, theft, escaping while under arrest and possession of weapons.

Danish authorities alleged at that time that Salem was a member of the "Black Ghosts", an Odense-based criminal gang. 

A previous appeal by Salem to the European Court of Human Rights against his expulsion from Denmark was rejected in late 2014. 

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