find the latest legal job
Corporate Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Highly-respected, innovative and entrepreneurial Not-for-Profit · Competency based Board
View details
Chief Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Dynamic, high growth organisation · ASX listed market leader
View details
In-house Projects Lawyer | Renewables / Solar | 2-5 Years PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: All Australia
· Help design the future · NASDAQ Listed
View details
Insurance Lawyer (3-5 PAE)
Category: Insurance and Superannuation Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Dynamic organisation ·
View details
Legal Counsel
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: North Sydney NSW 2060
· 18 month fixed term contract · 3-5 years PQE with TMT exposure
View details
Lawyer claims Oskar Schindler would be arrested in Australia

Lawyer claims Oskar Schindler would be arrested in Australia

A prominent human rights lawyer has shone the spotlight on Australia's refugee laws in the wake of new people smuggling laws in Indonesia.The president of the Australian Lawyers for Human Rights…

A prominent human rights lawyer has shone the spotlight on Australia's refugee laws in the wake of new people smuggling laws in Indonesia.

The president of the Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR), Stephen Keim SC, spoke to Lawyers Weekly in the wake of the Indonesian authorities passing legislation last week which cracks down on people smugglers. Convicted people smugglers in Indonesia will now face a minimum of five years gaol and a maximum sentence of 15 years behind bars.

Keim said that while Australian politicians have congratulated Indonesian authorities on their tougher laws, they should look at the fairness of current Australian anti-people smuggling legislation passed in May last year. Keim said this legislation takes away the requirement to prove people smugglers are seeking to make a profit.

"The classic examples of the humanitarian people smugglers, such as the captain of the Tampa (Arne Rinnen) or Oskar Schindler would be guilty of people smuggling under the Australian legislation," he said. "It is a little bit unfashionable to demonise asylum seekers now, so you look for somebody else ... with the demons out there now called people smugglers."

The Federal Government was quick to praise the Indonesian Government for its new laws. Yesterday (11 April), Immigration and Citizenship Minister Chris Bowen said: "Indonesia's ongoing efforts are a critical part of what is now a concerted regional push to break the people smugglers' business model. Australia looks forward to continued cooperation with our near neighbour."

While criticising the Federal Government over its stance on people smugglers, Keim was heartened by the recent introduction into Parliament of the Migration Act Amendment (Complementary Protection) Bill 2011. He said that while the ALHR supports the proposed laws, which provide a complementary visa scheme whereby individuals who might not qualify as a refugee could be allowed to stay in Australia if there is a risk of inhumane treatment or death in their home country, it would like to see further amendments.

"The proposed legislation needs to be changed so that it does not impose a series of very technical findings on the part of those officials who are assessing the matter, but they look at the real danger to the person proposed to be returned," Keim said.

In particular, the ALHR would like the requirement in the proposed legislation that officials need to assess the real risk of individuals being subject to significant harm as a necessary and foreseeable consequence of being returned to their homeland removed from the proposed legislation.

"That just seems to be saying the same things multiple times and making it more difficult," he said.

Keim said that such amendments would bring Australia closer into line with other countries and meet its obligations under international law.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Lawyer claims Oskar Schindler would be arrested in Australia
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
LCA president Fiona McLeod SC
Aug 17 2017
Where social fault lines meet the justice gap in Aus
After just returning from a tour of the Northern Territory, LCA president Fiona McLeod SC speaks wit...
Marriage equality flag
Aug 17 2017
ALHR backs High Court challenge to marriage equality postal vote
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) has voiced its support for a constitutional challenge to ...
Give advice
Aug 17 2017
A-G issues advice on judiciary’s public presence
Commonwealth Attorney-General George Brandis QC has offered his advice on the public presence of jud...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...