A registered sex offender who was the ringleader of a child exploitation gang allegedly used apps like TikTok and Instagram to contact minors before he was arrested in Melbourne just weeks after he was released from immigration detention.
It comes as the government pushes through laws to try and put released immigration detainees back behind bars after the High Court ruled they should be released as indefinite detention was illegal.
Asylum seeker Emran Dad, 33, was arrested in Dandenong, south-east of Melbourne, and charged with nine counts of failing to comply with his reporting obligations as a registered sex offender.
He was also charged with trespassing after failing to leave a public arena in Dandenong on November 24.
A ex-ringleader of a child exploitation gang allegedly used popular apps like TikTok and Instagram to contact minors before he was arrested in Melbourne just weeks after he was released from immigration detention (stock image)
Emran Dad, a registered sex offender, appeared in the Dandenong Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday afternoon (pictured) where he made no application for bail
The registered sex offender appeared in the Dandenong Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday afternoon, where he made no application for bail.
While Dad’s lawyer had hoped to return on Wednesday to make that application, he was told it would not be possible until December 14.
The court heard Dad suffered an intellectual disability, which had been largely left untreated while he remained in immigration detention.
He also complained about breathing difficulties while in custody.
Dad’s lawyer asked his client to be treated by a prison nurse before being taken back to jail and said he was ‘not happy with being in custody at the moment’.
He requested to appear in person at his next court appearance on December 14.
Dad, who is from Afghanistan, was alleged to have run a prostitution ring that targeted underage girls in state care and was jailed for having sex with a 13-year-old girl in exchange for cigarettes.
Victoria Police said on Tuesday: ‘Police have arrested a man today after he breached his reporting obligations as a registered sex offender.
‘The 33-year-old was arrested in Dandenong this morning without incident. Police are currently interviewing him.
‘Victoria Police can confirm the man is one of the detainees recently released following a High Court ruling. Victoria Police is always proactive in addressing community risk presented by those who would commit criminal acts.’
Afghan refugee Aliyawar Yawari, 65, was arrested at the Pavlos Motel in Pooraka in Adelaide’s north on Saturday and charged with indecently assaulting a female guest
Opposition Finance Minister Jane Hume has accused Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil (pictured) of ‘botching’ the release of 148 immigration detainees
Dad’s arrest comes as it was revealed on Monday night that Australian authorities had arrested another two freed detainees.
Mohammed Ali Nadari was arrested in western Sydney on drugs charges last weekend just six days after being released.
Afghan refugee Aliyawar Yawari, 65, was arrested at the Pavlos Motel in Pooraka in Adelaide’s north on Saturday and charged with indecently assaulting a female guest.
Yawari remains before the courts.
The charged detainees were entitled to the presumption of innocence, Australian Lawyers Alliance spokesman Greg Barns said.
Legislation should have been in the works and ready to roll out to keep the worst offenders behind bars in case the court case was lost, the opposition argues.
But a preventative detention regime couldn’t have kept the whole cohort behind bars as the government couldn’t out-legislate a High Court ruling, Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus said in a statement tabled in the Senate.
The court made a decision that applied to people held in immigration detention in the same circumstances as the original complainant, NZYQ, and detaining anyone affected by the ruling would be unlawful, he said.
Any delay could open the Commonwealth up to legal action over false imprisonment, the attorney-general said.
The government needed to detail how each case related to the ruling, the reasons why they were released and what countries were approached to resettle them, shadow attorney-general Michaelia Cash said.
Labor minister Murray Watt argued former home affairs minister Peter Dutton’s failure to take up resettlement deals or deport the cohort was the reason the people were allowed to linger in detention.
The opposition has been given the chance to review the legal advice the government received from the solicitor-general.
The preventative detention regime will capture people in the cohort who pose a serious risk to the community and enable the government to apply to put them back behind bars even if they’ve served their prison sentence.
It’s unknown exactly how many people will be covered by the new detention regime but Mr Watt previously suggested it would only extend to a small number of people.
The preventative detention laws will allow the released detainees to be put back behind bars if a court is satisfied there’s a high chance they pose “an unacceptable risk of committing a serious violent or sexual offence”.
It would also be a criminal offence for people who have been convicted of serious or violent sexual offences to go near a school or contact their victim or their victim’s family.
The maximum length of the order is three years and the minister will need to reapply to the court for a review every year.
There is also mandatory jail time of a year and a maximum of five behind bars if a released detainee breaches an enhanced supervision order that applies to them.
The Greens argue the laws are overreach and create a two-tiered justice system as criminals are released every day.
Labor had capitulated to the coalition to avoid a political fight over national security, Greens senator David Shoebridge said.
“If you have to put a couple of people in jail for the rest of their lives even though there’s no evidence of future offending … Labor are willing to pay that price,” he said, pointing to problems with the tools used to assess the risk a person poses.
The amended legislation is set to be ticked off by the lower house on Thursday.