Cranbourne North family wants criminal who sexually assaulted woman in her home to be deported

Australian Immigration

THE family of a woman sexually assaulted as she slept in her Cranbourne North home wants the man responsible booted out of the country.

Family members have even offered to pay for a one-way ticket for South Sudanese refugee Lang Kouth, 21, who has lived in Australia since he was nine years old.

Kouth was sentenced to four years’ prison on November 29 after he pleaded guilty to sexual assault, aggravated burglary and theft, as well as unlicensed and careless driving.

The court heard a drunken Kouth entered the family’s home through an unlocked door, stealing a mobile phone and car keys before going into the bedroom.

There he took off his shoes and climbed into the couple’s bed, aggressively kissing and biting a woman.

Kouth then bolted from the home and stole the family’s Ford Falcon. He was picked up by police about 3.30am after losing control of the vehicle and smashing into a tree.

Speaking to the Leader after Kouth’s court appearance, the victim’s mother-in-law said the family was now living a nightmare.

“He’s got two years and three months, my son and daughter have a lifetime of flashbacks and trauma,” she said.

She said she had started an online petition asking that refugees and immigrants who receive jail sentences of more than 12 months have their residency revoked and be deported.

Under the Migration Act 1958, the immigration minister may refuse or cancel a visa on character grounds and nonresidents can have their visa cancelled if they have been convicted of a crime that carries a prison sentence of 12 months or longer.

The woman said her daughter-in-law had been left traumatised by the assault.

“My daughter-in-law … she woke up and just saw a pair of white eyes looking at her,” she said.

“We are left living in a prison in my house now; I was just out in the backyard and I had the door locked and deadbolted and my back door locked in case someone was able to sneak in past me.

“He’s not a kid, he knew what he did was wrong … he used alcohol as an excuse but you still know right from wrong whether you are on ice or heroin or blind drunk.”

The Department of Immigration confirmed Kouth was an Australian citizen, but would not speak further about the case.

Immigration to Australia

Liberty Victoria president Jessie Taylor said having different laws for citizens born in Australia and citizens born overseas would set up different classes of citizenship, which was not something Australia should consider.

She said Australian law allowed citizenship to be revoked if a person was found to be fighting with the armed forces of a country at war with Australia, but if it was extended beyond that it could lead to a slippery slope where any number of other people could be exiled.

“It is completely understandable that the family of this victim is angry and distressed, however, we believe that the proposal is not justified,” she said.

“Citizenship can and should only be cancelled in extreme circumstances.

“We cannot simply deport people who commit antisocial or criminal behaviour once they have become citizens.”

A Victoria Legal Aid spokeswoman said visas could not be refused or cancelled on the basis of a person’s nationality or membership of a particular cultural group.

“The minister must strike a balance between the risk a person poses, and the profound consequences for people whose visas are cancelled,” she said.

“The consequence for some will be either return to persecution or harm, or indefinite detention in Australia because they can’t be sent back.”

Article Source: heraldsun

Offshore detention: Australia’s recent immigration history a ‘human rights catastrophe’

Migration to Australia

Adeal with the US to settle an unknown number of refugees from Australia’s offshore processing centres could mark the end of one of Australia’s most contentious political and moral issues over the past 15 years.

Since offshore processing was restarted in 2001, it has grown into an internationally condemned, secretive regime, subject to hundreds of court cases in Australia and overseas.

Inside the centres there have been violent deaths, horrific acts of self-harm and abuse, and mass protests.

The centres have emptied and swelled, peaking under the former Labor government.

The government’s line, hardened over the years by both Labor and the Coalition, had left it in an immovable position – not one asylum seeker who comes by boat can settle in Australia, lest its policy be seen as a failure.

Australia’s government claims its harsh policies have stopped the boats – despite some recent attempts – and thus the deaths at sea. It’s assumed any future arrivals would be dealt with as they are now – with enhanced screening processes and boat turnbacks.

The ‘Pacific Solution’

Offshore processing restarted in earnest in 2001 after the Tampa affair, when a Norwegian freighter rescued 433 asylum seekers from their sinking vessel, 140km from Christmas Island. Against international law, Australia refused the Tamp entry into its waters, sparking an international controversy.

Dubbed the “Pacific Solution” under then prime minister John Howard, the policy saw all asylum seekers who arrived by boat intercepted at sea and sent straight to offshore camps established on Nauru and Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island.

Australian Immigration

Christmas Island, closer to Indonesia, was excised from the Australian migration zone to host another centre. A subsequent Labor government would more than 10 years later excise the entire Australian mainland.

Following the “children overboard” incident in October 2001 – and the deaths of 353 men, women and children in the Siev X disaster – asylum seekers were a major political issue and Howard went to a federal election with his infamous declaration that “we will decide who comes to this country and the manner in which they come”.

Howard won the election and offshore processing continued. Concerns about indefinite detention and its impact on physical and mental health was widespread among advocates and rights groups.

‘Pacific Solution’ ends but the boats restart

The detention camps housed more than 1,500 people. Between 2001 and 2008, 705 people from the offshore centres were resettled in Australia and 401 in New Zealand. Some asylum seekers remained in detention for years, but the boat arrivals slowed, and in 2008 offshore processing was dismantled by the new Labor government, led by Kevin Rudd.

However arrivals began again and several high-profile tragedies, including an explosion on a boat near Ashmore Reef in 2009 and the crashing of Siev 221 on the coast of Christmas Island in 2010, contributed to a death toll at sea estimated at more than 1,000.

A deal under then prime minister Julia Gillard, signed in mid 2011 with Malaysia, was supposed to see 4,000 refugees taken from Malaysia’s camps in return for it taking 800 asylum seekers who arrived in Australia by boat, but this was struck down by the high court.

Later, the Coalition immigration minister Scott Morrison would successfully negotiate a $55.5m deal with Cambodia to host refugees, but it would be taken up by just six people, with many returning home shortly after arriving.

Following recommendations from an expert panel which focused largely on the need for a “no advantage” policy, offshore processing on Nauru and Manus Island restarted in August 2012.

An “enhanced screening” process – criticised for its lack of transparency – was introduced to deal with the overwhelming backlog of asylum seekers, which grew to 20,000 by mid-2013.

Amnesty International and the UNHCR released reports condemning the conditions inside the two centres, and the indefinite nature of the detention. Amnesty labelled the Nauru centre “a human rights catastrophe”.

Read more : theguardian