Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton being interviewed about his proposed new deportation Bill. (Source: Channel 9)
23 October 2018
Daniel Mcculloch – Australian Associated Press
It will be easier to deport foreign-born criminals under proposed changes to Australia’s migration laws.
The Federal government is preparing to introduce legislation aimed at toughening up the rules around visa cancellations.
As it stands, the visas of people sentenced to at least 12 months in prison can be cancelled on “bad character” grounds.
Almost 4,000 foreign-born criminals have been booted out of the country in the past four years.
The government now wants to be able to cancel the visas of anyone convicted of an offence punishable by at least two years in prison – regardless of whether they were jailed for less time, or not at all.
The laws would capture violent and sexual crimes including riots, home invasions, carjackings and serious breaches of family violence orders.
Children who commit serious crimes would also be included in the crackdown.
Victorian Liberal MP Jason Wood, who chairs a parliamentary committee on migration, is concerned repeat offenders are flying under the radar.
Mr Wood, from the outer Melbourne seat of La Trobe, said too many offenders convicted of sexual offences, assaults and gang-related crimes were receiving sentences of less than 12 months.
“At the moment it’s based on the time served and not the crime committed,” Mr Wood AAP on Tuesday.
“It’s only fair if someone is on a visa here in our country, to say to them, ‘Listen, don’t go and bash your fellow Australians, don’t go and commit home invasions and sexual offences’.”
The proposed changes have been announced a month out from the Victorian state election, where law and order has emerged as a major campaign issue.
[Read The Australian article (may be pay-walled)].