2 Sep 2018

Man deported for not telling immigration about sperm donation

11:50 am on 2 September 2018

A 72-year-old man who failed to tell immigration officials he had fathered a baby by donating sperm has lost a battle against deportation.

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Photo: 123RF

Guogang Tao only named his two children with his wife when they applied for residence 12 years ago.

He told the immigration and protection tribunal he agreed to donate sperm for a woman, Wanluan Xu, who worked at his factory in China in 2000, but did not tell his wife.

He and his wife were granted residence in 2007 to join their two children in New Zealand and he said they split up after he told her about the child's paternity in 2011.

He returned to see Ms Xu and their child nine times between 2008 and 2015 and they registered their marriage in 2014.

It was after their daughter applied for residence as his child that he was served with a deportation notice for not informing Immigration New Zealand he had another child.

The agency said it would have investigated his first marriage more if it had known of the extramarital child.

His lawyer argued sperm donors were not parents under legislation in New Zealand.

The tribunal said he knew of DNA results before his residence application was finalised, although he did not intend to defraud immigration authorities.

"The Tribunal has sympathy for the appellant, an otherwise law-abiding person, whose natural wish was and is to live in New Zealand with his two New Zealand-based children and their families.

"However, the appellant was obliged to inform Immigration New Zealand of any relevant fact or any change of circumstance that might have affected the decision on his residence application, and nevertheless he did not advise Immigration New Zealand of the DNA analysis results which showed that he was genetically related to a child not declared in his application, and of his intention to add [her] to his household registration in China.

"As a result, the appellant deprived Immigration New Zealand of the opportunity to undertake a full assessment of his application and make a decision based on his real circumstances."

It upheld his deportation, but removed the usual period of prohibition on entry to New Zealand so that he could apply to visit his family.