News
20.05.13

PNG FUGITIVE AVOIDED TRIAL ON 457 VISA

Foreign Minister Bob Carr used his special powers to cancel a 457 visa issued by the federal government to an alleged crime boss, Eremas Wartoto wanted in Papua New Guinea over the theft of $30million.

The Australian reported on the 15 May that "an Immigration Department spokeswoman yesterday confirmed Mr Wartoto was granted a 457 visa in 2011. She said he met all of the conditions and was sponsored by an employer.

Mr Wartoto was living in Cairns where he ran a rental car business since being granted the visa in 2011. Brisbane District Court judge Douglas McGill yesterday ordered five properties, four bank accounts and dozens of cars owned by Mr Wartoto be seized, granting an application by the AFP. AFP lawyer Ben Moses told the court Mr Wartoto was wanted for fraud offences in PNG and it was alleged some of the offending conduct occurred in Queensland".

The case raises yet another question about the merits of the 457 visa program. How can it be legal for a boss / owner of a business to sponsor themselves; especially as it is now alleged that the business was set up from proceeds of crime. The 457 visa program is not only being used to undercut wages in Australia but it is now being used to avoid arrest and prosecution in another country!