Australian police to crack down on illegal immigration, border patrol officers will be ‘more proactive’
The Federal Government will impose tougher penalties on border officers, including for people who illegally cross the country, to ensure the safety of the nation, the ABC has learned.
Key points:The Federal Government is to introduce mandatory fines for people illegally crossing the borderThe move comes as it steps up enforcement of the border with New Zealand, where some illegal immigrants have been apprehended and detainedFor more news, visit the ABC News website.
The move is part of a crackdown on illegal migration, with the Federal Government also tightening its border security and tightening the enforcement of its border control with New York and New Zealand.
It will mean border patrol agents will be more proactive and use other tools to apprehend and detain illegal immigrants.
“It’s the end of the day, in the end it’s going to be a proactive policing system,” Attorney-General Michael Keenan said.
“We are looking at it from a proactive perspective, we are going to use new technology, we’re going to make use of technology that we haven’t had in a while.”
So we’ll be using all of that in an effort to get the job done, and we’re looking at what we can do with other law enforcement.
“Mr Keenan announced the changes during a speech in New Zealand on Thursday, saying the Government had to act fast to protect the country.”
New Zealanders have a duty to protect our country,” he said.
Mr Keenans comments came as the Government was in New York to meet with the heads of major international organisations and to discuss the border issue.”
What we’ve heard today is the best way to do that is to ensure that we’re doing the right thing, the right number of people coming through, the enforcement is good,” he told reporters.”
There’s a very strong correlation between immigration, crime and the health of our country.
“Mr Johnson said he was “very concerned” by the recent developments and had ordered a review into the border, to determine how the Government can “do better”.”
What I can tell you is that we’ve got an incredibly talented and committed team in New South Wales that is doing some very good work on the border,” he added.
Mr Johnson has previously told the ABC he was not interested in reopening the border.”
If I had a choice, I would not reopen the border because I don’t think it’s fair to all of the people that have been illegally brought into Australia by people who have been brought here illegally,” he has said.
He said it was important for the Government to focus on “getting this border secure” and that it would not “reopen the border” until all those people were removed from Australia.”
The Australian Government has done a very good job, they’ve made great progress in the last year,” he explained.”
And I’ve just been very clear that the focus must be on getting that border secure.”‘
More effective and less intrusive’Mr Keenant said the Government would work with international organisations to implement the new measures.”
As I’ve said many times before, Australia is a country of law, so it’s important that we have a proper law on the books,” he insisted.”
I don’t know how we can enforce it all on the internet, I think it would be very, very difficult to do.
“But we will work with the international community and the UN to make sure we do as much as possible to enforce our laws.”
Mr Johnston, who is also a member of the Federal Parliament, said the changes were “part of a broader crackdown on crime”.
“I’m very concerned about the way we are now operating in the community, because we’re not doing a good job of stopping criminals and we are allowing the very people that are committing these crimes to continue to be here,” he argued.
“That is a real issue and we have to get our priorities straight.”‘
We’re not going to put up with this’Mr Johnston also told the media he was disappointed the Government did not increase penalties for people caught trying to illegally cross Australia.
He warned that, if those caught were successful in their claims, the Federal Court would have the power to force their release.
“Our concern is the number of cases that we are having, we’ve only got a handful of people who are successful, so I’m very disappointed that there hasn’t been a higher threshold,” he warned.
Mr Johnston said the Federal government would have to find a way to make the penalties more effective and more intrusive.
“This is not about the money, it’s about the people who get caught and the consequences of their actions, and it will have to be an approach that we adopt,” he continued.
“You’ve got to make it easier for the border to be closed, and you’ve got a duty of care to people who want to get to Australia.”