13 February 2012

'Brutal' Kiwi criminal wins Australian visa fight

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A New Zealand man has managed to overturn an Australian government's deportation order after claiming he would not be 'welcomed home' in his native New Zealand.

Australia visa

Matiu was jailed for four years and nine months for an 'especially brutal' attack on his girlfriend.

Frank Makere Matiu, 46, had his Australia visa cancelled in 2011 after being convicted of an 'especially brutal' attack on his girlfriend.

However, Matiu, who has been living in Australia since 1990, managed to convince an Australian immigration appeal board that he had been ostracised by his family and would be "set up for failure" if he returned there.

Matiu allegedly savagely beat his girlfriend and then force fed her sleeping pills in a reservoir shed after a day of heavy drinking and drug taking in 2009.

The sentencing judge jailed Matiu for four years and nine months and was issued a deportation order. Matiu took his case to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal of Australia, who ruled in his favour.

A senior member of the tribunal said that while Matiu's attack was "especially brutal" and "abhorrent", the attack was an isolated offence under the influence of alcohol and drugs and Matiu had no other convictions other than three driving offences.

This, combined with Matiu's model prison record, going through drug and alcohol rehabilitation as well as completing anger management courses and attending church, persuaded the tribunal to overturn the immigration department's decision to deport him.

Matiu's success stands in contrast to recent criminal Hayden 'Tiny' Harlem Tewao, the 'gentle giant' who was deported in January despite claiming he would be killed by members of his former gang.

Tewao, 26, was judged to have a gentle nature and coerced into committing armed robbery by others but was deported after claims his 'exceptionally large' frame made him a risk factor.


The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent migration consultancy specialising in helping people lodge applications with the Australian Embassy.

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