7 Jul 2019

It's inevitable deportees will turn to crime - Goff

10:20 am on 7 July 2019

The Auckland mayor says it is inevitable people deported from Australia will revert to criminal activity, because they have no support when they arrive.

Phil Goff on the day he was elected Auckland mayor. 8 October 2016.

Phil Goff wants the government and police to look at new measures to prevent serious violence in Auckland after a recent run of shootings. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

In April, the police organised crime unit said the New Zealand chapter of the Comancheros was set up by deportees from Australia.

Phil Goff said there is a high level of community concern about the city's organised crime connections to Australia.

Mr Goff has asked the government and the police to look at what more can be done to stop the violence, in response to recent shootings in Auckland. The latest incident occurred early yesterday, with a person suffering serious injuries in a shooting in Clover Park.

Of the nearly 1700 people sent from Australia since the start of 2015, more than 40 percent have been charged with an offence in New Zealand.

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A forensic team prepares to enter a property in Clover Park yesterday after a person was shot. Photo: RNZ / Jessie Chiang

Mr Goff said some leaders are concerned about the safety of their communities.

He said the deportees - many of whom have lived in Australia so long they have no memory of New Zealand - arrived in this country with noone to help them establish themselves, so inevitably a high percentage will find themselves back involved in crime.

"They have no contacts, no social network, no support group in New Zealand but they're being sent back to New Zealand and inevitably a high percentage of those people will find themselves back involved in crime."

Mr Goff also wants the police to rein in gangs after the latest shooting.

"What more can we do to make sure that we haven't got young people in South Auckland shooting each other just like it's the wild west. It's not good enough, it's not an easy problem to solve but I expect that to be a priority at the top of the list of police concerns."

Police said they are are actively dealing with recent events in the Counties Manukau District and urge the public to contact them over any gang-related activity.

These incidents are generally carried out by a small number of people, they said.

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