James, a journalist and human rights activist, arrived in the UK in 1998 after fleeing Sierra Leone at the height of its civil war. He studied, worked and volunteered in the UK for ten years with full legal rights. Following a number of threats resulting from his journalism exposing corruption in the Sierra Leonean government, it was not possible for James to return to Sierra Leone, so he applied for asylum in 2008. However, his application was refused. James has been attempting to appeal this decision since then. On 1st August 2011 James took the decision to go on hunger strike to protest against the actions of the UKBA during his appeal process. These actions have included misleading a sitting MP and ignoring correspondence from his legal representatives.