Almost Half Of The Immigration Detainees Released Last Year Committed Violent Offences

Last year, the government released 149 immigration detainees from indefinite immigration detention. However, they failed to clarify what crimes these people allegedly committed. 

Recently, the government released some details. According to reports, almost 50% of the 149 immigration detainees released last year committed violent offences including kidnapping and robbery. In addition, six individuals have since faced charges for violating visa conditions since their release.

According to reports, some of those released are not required to follow all safety restrictions. And the lack of action has prompted some criticism.

Indefinite immigration detention deemed unlawful

In 2023, a High Court decision deemed indefinite immigration detention unlawful, resulting in the release of 149 immigration prisoners. As such, there are potentially hundreds of people who have been unlawfully in immigration detention. They also now may have a claim against the Commonwealth Government. However, the government now faces other issues with the release.

Previously, government ministers emphasised community safety as their top priority. However, a recent inquiry by the opposition showed that only 103 of those released from immigration detention had all of the prescribed restrictions applied to them.

For example, out of the 149, 113 previous detainees were also mandated to wear electronic ankle monitoring devices, unless the minister is satisfied that they pose no risk to the community. However, almost 40 won’t have to wear these tracking devices now.

Immigration Detention Centre Releases

The government previously failed to state why the police initially detained the immigrants. However, new information indicates that almost half of them had previous convictions for assault, violent offences, kidnapping, and armed robbery. Furthermore, thirty-seven had faced sexual offence related charges. In addition, seven were guilty of murder or attempted murder, with some of the offences taking place overseas.

Charges since the release of immigration detainees 

Further data reveals that police charged 18 people since their release with breaking the law across Australia. For example, police charged a man with indecently assaulting a woman in Adelaide shortly after his release.

This news comes despite the government enacting new laws for community safety. Firstly, the government made detention orders that allow for imprisonment if there is a high probability of someone committing a serious offence. However, so far there are no applications for preventative detention orders. 

If you face criminal charges, speak to our Sydney lawyers today. Additionally, O’Briens Criminal & Civil Lawyers specialise in unlawful imprisonment. If you were unlawfully imprisoned, get in touch. We have filed more claims against state and commonwealth agencies than any other law firm. Call us today on (02) 9261 4281 or email to book a free initial consultation with one of our civil lawyers. 

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Nicole Byrne

Content Creator | Media Coordinator
O'Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors


O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors
p: 02 9261 4281
a: Level 4, 219-223 Castlereagh St,
Sydney NSW 2000

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