30 Sep 2015

NZ to receive more information on deportations

5:06 pm on 30 September 2015

New Zealand will receive more information about pending deportations from Australia under a new information-sharing arrangement.

Caucus run 21/07/15

Justice Minister Amy Adams said the information-sharing deal would help agencies manage offenders once they arrived in New Zealand. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

The Justice and Police Ministers have signed the deal with the Australian Immigration and Border Protection Minister.

About 200 New Zealand citizens are being held in Australian detention centres pending deportation and 80 have already been deported since a new law came into force last year.

Under the new law, anyone who has served more than a year in prison in their lifetime and is not an Australian citizen is eligible for deportation.

Police Minister Michael Woodhouse said the arrangement would provide New Zealand agencies with up to six months' notice of any potential upcoming deportations and the deportees' criminal histories.

Justice Minister Amy Adams said, under the deal, agencies would be in a stronger position to monitor and supervise those who returned to New Zealand and who posed a serious threat to the public.

"A key issue when dealing with offenders being deported back to New Zealand has been obtaining reliable information about the individual and their current risk profile."

The information provided by Australia, combined with a register announced by Ms Adams in July, would provide New Zealand authorities with greater oversight of who exactly was arriving here, and when.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister John Key said Australia needed to think about the way it treated New Zealanders living in Australia, including those who had committed crimes but had no ties to New Zealand.

He said he had had a "pretty blunt" conversation with Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop on the topic while at the United Nations in New York.

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