The inquiry into the Australia Visa corruption claim has been confirmed by the Home Affairs Department. This was informed by the DHA Secretary Michael Pezzullo to the estimates hearing in the Australian Senate. The department is conducting an investigation in the matter, he added. This was after detained immigrant made this claim revealed by The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald.
The detainee alleged that DHA had handed back cancelled Visa to William Sualauvi Betham a convicted drug trafficker. He is now residing at the Gold Coast. Betham told the detainee that he has a contact that can get back his Australia Visa for payment of $ 80,000.
The case has exposed an opaque process through which 100s of criminals are getting their fixed visa cancellations overturned. This is by officials of DHA, Assistant Minister or Minister.
The Australia Visa cancellation for Betham was done by the DHA officials. This is in spite of his 10 plus years jailing in 2018. It was for his involvement in a syndicate for drug trafficking.
The Visa of the New Zealander was cancelled by default on grounds of character under Migration Act’s section 501. He was later given parole and detained on Christmas Island. Betham was released in 2017 and handed back his Australia Visa.
Jennifer Samuta the Lawyer for Bentham said that her client refutes payment of cash to any DHA official. This is for reinstating his Visa. This includes anyone who can be in a position to influence any such decision, she added.
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