22 Nov 2014

Smith to be deported within 10 days

9:45 pm on 22 November 2014

A Brazilian court has ordered the New Zealand murderer and paedophile Phillip John Smith be deported within 10 days.

Phillip John Smith being taken into custody at the Maravilhosa Hostel in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Phillip John Smith being taken into custody at the Maravilhosa Hostel in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Photo: TV Bandeirantes

The convicted killer fled New Zealand more than two weeks ago, while on temporary release from prison.

He was captured by Brazilian police soon after arriving in Rio de Janeiro and was seeking a lawyer there for advice on whether he should voluntarily return to New Zealand or face possible deportation or extradition.

But a court order released in Brazil said he was dangerous and must leave the country within 10 days.

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Brazilian freelance journalist Alexandre Tortoriello said the court wanted Smith to be deported, rather than go through an extradition process.

The court said New Zealand had offered a police escort and to pay for Smith's deportation, Mr Tortoriello said.

He said the court believed Smith was intending to get married in Brazil to try and secure citizenship.

Mr Tortoriello said Smith had the opportunity to find a Brazilian lawyer and appeal, but this had to be done before he was deported, which could happen at any moment.

Lawyer surprised deportation order took so long

Smith's New Zealand lawyer Tony Ellis said he was surprised it had taken this long for Brazilian authorities to order the deportation of his client.

The judge said he suspected Smith planned to marry in Brazil to make it harder to force him out of the country.

Mr Ellis said he did not know if it was true.

But he said because Smith was a murderer staying unlawfully in Brazil, he thought he would have been deported sooner.

"It seems relatively straightforward, he's a convicted murderer, he's not denying that, he fled, his passport's been cancelled so he must be logically unlawfully in Brazil, so I'm just surprised it's taken so long."

Mr Ellis said the Brazilian authorities were denying him phone contact with Smith, and he had only been able to pass messages through the embassy.

He said Smith's money had been seized by the Brazilian police and was being held by the New Zealand embassy.

Mr Ellis said that was making Smith's hunt for a local lawyer difficult.

"The Brazilian lawyers we've spoken to, of course want money and we don't have any means of providing them with any.

"We are trying to negotiate with one, but he's out of the country at the moment."

New Zealand police said arrangements for Phillip John Smith to be deported from Brazil will be made once the full details of the Brazilian Court ruling were understood.

A police spokesperson said they were aware of the decision but a full understanding of the Brazilian justice process was needed before details and return timeframes could be made.

Smith was taken into custody in Rio de Janeiro on 13 November after fleeing New Zealand while on temporary release from the Spring Hill prison in Waikato.

He used a passport issued in his birth name Phillip Traynor to get on a flight to Chile, from where he went to Brazil.

Smith was jailed in 1996 for stabbing to death the father of a boy he had been convicted of sexually assaulting.

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