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July 3, 2013 12:06 am

U.S. Student Says He was Refused Entry Into U.K. Over Israeli Passport Stamps

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A Kansas City Jewish student says U.K. border agents detained him over Israeli entry stamps (like the one pictured) in his U.S. passport. Photo: Wikimedia Commons. A Kansas City student who was denied entry into the United Kingdom late last month and was detained for more than nine hours by U.K. customs officials, before being put on a plane back to the U.S., believes he was targeted because he is Jewish and had traveled to Israel.

Louis Cantor, 23, arrived in the U.K. and waited in line to go through customs. He was detained after a customs agent saw two pages in his passport with Israeli stamps. Cantor says he was never told why he was being denied entry. He was told his photo and fingerprints have now been placed in a database that will make it difficult for him to obtain entry into the U.K. or any other European Union country.

Cantor’s father, Chuck Cantor, said that during the time Cantor was detained, he was given only half of a sandwich and very little water. When Cantor asked for more food and water, he was denied and told to “stop pestering.”

The U.K. man who had offered Cantor summer work experience, Kevin Shilling, said that the U.K. Border Agency agent he spoke to in his attempt to get Cantor admitted into the country made more than one anti-Semitic comment.

After his detention, Cantor was escorted to a plane for a flight back to the U.S. “My only real goal with this fiasco is to get my fingerprints and picture removed from their database and the blacked out stamp in my passport removed as well,” he said.

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  • Alexandra

    In response to David requesting members of the public to write to Home office regarding this complaint:

    Israel constantly tells the rest of us that it is their country and they have the right to admit or refuse who they please. Thus you have to accept that the Uk also has the right of denial or admission.

    Also, countless people are denied entry every day into Israel just because they want to visit or work in the West Bank where no work permits are issued – I know from experience.

    If you are going to dole out this sort of treatment you have got to take it in return.

    • Alexandra

      Ps having said all this I am not exactly happy at the young man’s treatment, he was only coming for the summer they could have overlooked this ,allowed him entry into the country I do think that not giving his passport back to him until the plane landed in Usa was awful, he was only coming to work illegally, there is no evidence that he committed a crime, it’s not like he was a murderer or anything. What escape route was he going to take across the atlantic even if he had his passport?

      • lesley davies

        Where does it say he was coming to work illegally? Nowhere.

    • lesley davies

      Israel tend to have and give good reason for not allowing folks entry. This guy was never told why he was being denied entry.

      • Alexandra

        No Israel does not give or have good reasons. Just mere mention of the West Bank is enough to be denied entry

  • Truth

    Unfortunately all the coverage on this has assumed that Mr Cantor and Mr Shilling are telling the truth. I don’t believe there are. There are clear and obvious explanations for what happened, minus the nonsense about ‘Jews’ but it is being drowned out by anti Muslim bigotry across the web. The reality is this isn’t about an anti Semitic ‘Muslim loving’ border guard, but just someone doing their job properly.

  • Kyle Sharpe

    Did he have a visa for working in the UK? What kind of visa did he have for the UK?

  • David Hoffman

    I urge concerned members of the public to write a complaint about this matter to:-
    The Home Office
    Direct communications unit
    2 Marsham Street
    London SW1P 4DF fax: 020 7035 4745
    Email address:-

    • Julian

      I sent an email, but I doubt it will do any good. The UK is done. They will be living under Sharia law within 20 years.

    • Alexandra

      “I urge concerned members of the public to write a complaint about this matter to:”-

      Why should we be? Are any of you concerned when we are denied entry into Israel? Of course you aren’t.

      You will just deliver the usual rap, it’s our country.