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Tuesday, 25 November 1930

Senator PAYNE (Tasmania) .- Senator Lynchis justified in directing the attention of the Senate to the fact that this measure will make certain sections of the principal act restrospective to 1901.

Senator Sir George Pearce - Parliament thought that had already been clone.

Senator PAYNE - The position was clearly put by Senator Lynch. Certain persons who by some means may have evaded the customs officer in 1901, 1902, or 1903, and have since become reputable citizens, will be affected. It is quite wrong to make the law retrospective so that persons who came to Australia 25 or 30 years ago can be traced, and be liable to deportation unless they prove that they did not " evade an officer." Some of those men may have contracted family ties and entered into business relationships in Australia, and it is intolerable that they should now be liable to deportation. If the clause were made retrospective a few years, I should be inclined to support it; but I shall not support it in its present form. Clause 2 proposes to amend section 5 of the act of 1901, which reads -

Any immigrant who evades an officeror who enters the Commonwealth at any place where no officer is stationed ' may . . .

The proposal hero is to insert after the word " evades " the words " or has, since the commencement of the Immigration Restriction Act 1901, evaded".

Senator Sir Hal Colebatch - The bill proposes to amend the act of 1924, not thai; of 1901.

Senator PAYNE - The same words appear in the 1924 act that appear in the legislation of 1901. As the purpose of the bill is to make the penalty retrospective to 1901, I am not prepared to support the second reading.

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