‘Not enough proof’ to detain immigrants for more than two years
Posted On August 2, 2021
Immigration officers have made a big push to get people held for more time on remand for non-violent offences.
Now the federal government is pushing for that same legislation to be applied to non-citizens who commit more serious offences.
The move follows a crackdown on immigration in Victoria in January that saw the detention of more than 300 people on remands for minor crimes such as shoplifting and drug possession.
Victoria Police are encouraging people to speak with an immigration officer if they’re concerned about their security, but in the past, they’ve been told to call the number provided by Immigration Victoria and ask if they should be sent to immigration detention.
“It’s really a matter of trust.
If you’re being detained for non crimes, you want someone who’s not going to do anything bad.
It’s your right to go to the immigration officer,” Detective Sergeant Matt Hutton said.
Detective Sergeant Matt said people who’ve been arrested on remanded for non crime, and who are charged with a crime, should be given an opportunity to appear in court, and should not be placed in immigration detention for more then two years.
“They can’t be put back on remanding,” Detective Sgt Matt said.
“If you’re in that situation, that’s the time to make the request.”
Detective Sgt Matt says there are more than 100,000 non-citizen people in Victoria who have been placed in the detention centre system.
There are a range of options available to those on remittances.
Some offenders can be sent back to their home country after six months, while others are placed in detention for a year, while a third have a release order.
Detective Insp David Jones said there’s been a significant increase in the number of people being sent to the detention centres.
He said some offenders have been transferred to a new facility and there’s a need for additional capacity, particularly to handle more offenders.
Police say offenders should be treated with the same respect as any other citizen.
Det Sergeant Matt says he expects the changes to the laws to be introduced before Christmas.
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