I just (half an hour ago) entered the UK at Stansted airport, and the EEA queue at immigration was absolutely packed (it would have taken at least an hour to get through), whereas the non-EEA queue was all but empty (only one person, although a problem case, was being processed in front of me)
When I got to the officer, the following convo took place:
IO: You're Swedish mate
Me: Yeah I know, this queue was just much emptier.
IO: Well this is for non-EU people.
Me: I know, but there's no one behind me anyway, so I thought I'd just dash through.
IO: Well, don't do this again. This is for non-EU people - you have to go in the EU queue, every time.
Me: Heh, alright.
(IO hands back my ID and sends me on my way)
Is is true that I must use the EEA queue, or was the IO simply having a bad day? According to a Flyertalk user:
It is very rare (in my experience) for the non-EU lines to be emptier than the EU lines. But if they are indeed emptier, then there is no rule or otherwise that I am aware of that would enable the immigration officer to turn you away or make you go to the EU line. If that happens, I would seriously raise this with the chief immigration officer.
UPDATE: Second time just now, this time getting it on video. Regret not telling him why he misunderstood the meaning of being subject to immigration control. Guess I didn't want to drag it out further. Now I'll definitely write a letter to the Border Force and ask for clarification regarding this.