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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 62

(Question No. 4679)

Mr Cadman asked the Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs, upon notice, on 24 September 1986:

(1) How many instances of alleged or suspected immigration malpractice were (a) received and (b) investigated by his Department in (i) 1983-84, (ii) 1984-85 and (iii) 1985-86.

(2) How many prosecutions resulted in each of the years.

(3) What factors determine the priority for investigating instances of malpractice that are received by his Department.

Mr Hurford —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

Details about immigration malpractice, including statistics, are provided in my Department's annual report, for example on page 49 of Review '84 and pages 87 and 88 of Review '85. The following answers relate to the honourable member's specific questions.

(1) and (2) The number of allegations of suspected malpractice received by my Department is not recorded. The available statistics exclude those instances in which preliminary analysis reveals that an allegation is based on mere speculation, supposition or is otherwise unfounded. Allegations from different sources sometimes point to the same incident or suspected racket. The available statistics therefore relate to the number of matters accepted for investigation and in respect of which investigations have been initiated. The relevant figures are:




Investigations initiated ...




Investigations completed ...




Persons prosecuted ...




(3) All allegations or suspicions that staff or other officials are involved in corrupt practices connected with immigration matters are investigated, where appropriate, in conjunction with Police.

The factors which determine priorities for investigating other immigration malpractice are:

whether it appears that there is some degree of organisation or profiteering;

whether it is likely that a substantial number of people are abusing immigration policies, procedures and rules;

whether there is a threat to the integrity of or the orderly management of Australia's immigration program and large scale visitor intake; and

whether there are special circumstances which warrant investigation, possibly in conjunction with other agencies e.g. possible association with organised criminal activity.