More than 1,600 deported criminals including bikies and child sex offenders could be allowed back into Australia if a refugee successfully challenges Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton.
The refugee, known by the pseudonym FQM18, launched legal proceedings against Mr Dutton in the Federal Court in October after his humanitarian visa was cancelled on character grounds.
In another twist, the minister has taken medical leave after injuring his arm during the weekend and having surgery, which means he won’t answer questions on the matter in Parliament this week.
More than 1,600 deported criminals including bikies (Rebels leader Aaron ‘AJ’ Graham pictured) and child sex offenders could be allowed back into Australia if a refugee successfully challenges Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton
The Home Affairs Minister’s constitutional eligibility to remain in federal Parliament is being challenged, which could threaten the bulk of deportation orders made during the past four years.
As the senior minister in charge of border security, Mr Dutton has deported more than 1,600 criminals under section 501 of the Migration Act.
This allows any dual citizen who has been jailed for 12 months or more to be kicked out of Australia.
Between July 2013, shortly before the Coalition came to power, and December 2017, 3,394 visas were cancelled, with Mr Dutton responsible for almost half of the deportations since taking the immigration portfolio in December 2014.
The Home Affairs Minister’s constitutional eligibility to remain in federal Parliament is being challenged, which could threaten 3,390 deportation decisions since 2013 (pictured is Peter Dutton, who took over the immigration portfolio in December 2014)
The refugee’s global special humanitarian visa was cancelled in July 2016 on the grounds he had been convicted of a crime carrying a jail sentence of one year or more.
The plaintiff is suing the minister for refusing to revoke his visa cancellation in February 2018.
This refugee is also challenging Mr Dutton’s eligibility to remain in Parliament, on the grounds he is in potential breach of section 44 of the Constitution for having a stake in a Brisbane childhood centre that receives commonwealth subsidies.
Mr Dutton had cancelled his visa on character grounds in the Federal Court case, filed in Victoria, known as ‘FQM18 v Minister for Home Affairs’.
The refugee’s legal case against Peter Dutton could affect a series of deportations, including that of Finks enforcer Jesse Johnston (pictured) who was kicked out of Australia last year
The refugee also argues that with Mr Dutton potentially constitutionally unable to remain in Parliament, his ministerial decisions were invalid, as section 64 of the Constitution requires ministers to be MPs.
The government is arguing that only Parliament can refer Mr Dutton’s constitutional eligibility.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s government, however, no longer has a majority in Parliament, which means crossbench MPs, including newly-elected independent Dr Kerryn Phelps, could vote with the Labor Opposition to have Mr Duton referred to the High Court.
The refugee suing Mr Dutton has argued, via lawyers, that the minister’s decision to revoke his visa should be put on hold until the High Court resolves his constitutional eligibility to remain in Parliament.
If this challenge to Dutton’s eligibility succeeds, it will open the floodgates to other criminals who have had their visas cancelled under section 501 of the Migration Act (including Irish-born paedophile priest Finian Egan, pictured)
If the Parliament doesn’t refer Dutton’s case to the High Court, the minister’s visa cancellation could remain in limbo, meaning the refugee will be able to stay in Australia indefinitely.
If this challenge to Dutton’s eligibility succeeds, it will open the floodgates to other criminals who have had their visas cancelled under section 501 of the Migration Act.
Mr Dutton’s constitutional eligiblity could call into doubt a series of high-profile deportations, including those of New Zealand-born coward-punch killer Caleb Maraku in February 2018.
A series of Kiwi bikies Mr Dutton deported could also potentially challenge their expulsions from Australia, including 22-year-old Finks enforcer Jesse Johnston and Aaron ‘AJ’ Graham, the founder of the Rebels’ Tasmanian chapter, who were both sent packing last year.
Mr Dutton’s constitutional eligiblity could call into doubt a series of deportations, including that of New Zealand-born coward-punch killer Caleb Maraku (pictured) in February 2018
The Home Affairs Minister, who lost the immigration portfolio in August 2018, had also deported Victorian sex creep taxi driver Jagdeep Singh in August 2017 and Irish-born paedophile priest Finian Egan earlier this year, after he had served eight years behind bars for rape and seven counts of indecent assault on young girls during the 1960s to 1980s.
That same month, he deported Daniel Maxwell, who was convicted for the one-punch death of Cole Miller.
Linda Howard, a former United States diplomat accused of keeping sex slaves for her husband, was banned from returning to Australia in December 2017.
A legal decision against Mr Dutton could also give legal appeal grounds to hitman Roy ‘Red Rat’ Pollitt and senior West Australian bikie Kevin Lawrence, who were both deported last year.
As the Federal Court case details were made public, Mr Dutton tweeted that he would be missing this week’s sitting of Parliament because of an arm injury
As the Federal Court case details were made public, Mr Dutton tweeted that he would be missing this week’s sitting of Parliament because of an arm injury.
‘Last Friday afternoon I suffered an injury to my arm which required immediate surgery over the weekend and I will see the orthopaedic surgeon again this week,’ he tweeted on Monday.
‘I have taken medical leave from Parliament this week.’
Shadow immigration minister Shayne Neumann said the failure of the Coalition government, under prime ministers Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison, to ignore Mr Dutton’s eligibility issues had jeopardised Australia’s national security.
‘Because of the foolishness of the Morrison Government’s decision to ignore Mr Dutton’s eligibility issues, Australia’s ability to kick foreign criminals out of the country is now in jeopardy – with more than 1600 visa cancellations made by Mr Dutton now in question,’ he said in a statement on Monday.
‘This is clearly unacceptable and it puts Australians at risk.’