Second immigration detainee from NZYQ cohort arrested in three days for alleged breach of curfew obligations

Another immigration detainee released under the Supreme Court’s controversial NZYQ decision in November has been arrested over an alleged breach of visa conditions.

About 150 people were released following the court ruling late last year, which deemed indefinite immigration detention illegal for those who had no realistic prospect of deportation from Australia in the near future.

Nearly two dozen people from this cohort have since been arrested for various offenses – mainly visa violations – across all jurisdictions, with around ten since the start of the year.

Another man was taken into custody in Sydney on Monday and charged with failing to comply with a mandatory curfew stated in his visa requirements.

The Afghan-born man, 37, was arrested by Federal Police and is alleged to have appeared in Parramatta Local Court for failing to comply with a curfew condition, contrary to section 76C(1) of the Migration Act 1958 (Cth). .

“It will be alleged that the man breached the terms of his Commonwealth visa by failing to comply with his curfew obligations,” the AFP said.

This offense carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $93,000 fine.

It is the NZYQ detainee cohort’s second arrest in a week, following the arrest of a Sudanese-born man in Melbourne on similar charges on Friday.

The 45-year-old is also alleged to have breached his curfew ban and failed to comply with the requirement to keep his ankle monitoring device in good working order.

Home Secretary James Paterson said it was worrying to see the government would not implement its preventive detention regime adopted last year to capture higher-risk former detainees, given the significant proportion of those who reoffend had committed.

“That has not been used even once,” he told 2GB Radio. “There has been no proper justification, there have only been excuses.”

“Not one of them is off the streets, they all have the potential to reoffend, and some of them do. We know of at least 18 who have broken state and territory laws, and 12 who have breached their visa conditions.”

Labour’s preventive detention laws were passed in December last year, weeks after the NZYQ verdict was handed down, amid a war in parliament over border protection policies and brutal attacks on the government over its crackdown on what were portrayed as “hardened criminals”. to sharpen.

Under the legislation, the Minister for Immigration has the power to re-detain certain people released from immigration detention who – by a court of law – pose an unacceptable risk to the public because they have a propensity to commit serious crimes.

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Some of the released immigration detainees had previously been convicted of high-level crimes including murder, pedophilia and sexual offences, prompting the government to quickly enact new preventive laws.

The Supreme Court’s NZYQ ruling overturned 20 years of legal precedent and was welcomed by human rights groups as a huge victory for stateless refugees and asylum seekers.

Another major Supreme Court case, brought by Iranian detainee ASF17, is currently awaiting judgment. If successful, nearly 200 more people could be released from immigration detention.

When contacted by, neither the Home Office nor the AFP could provide confirmation on the number of immigration detainees arrested so far from the NZYQ cohort.