Marcus Beveridge, Principal of Queen City Law was asked to comment on immigration issues on Newstalk ZB this morning.
Students with fraudulent visas asked to come forward
|Immigration New Zealand is urging 231 Chinese students to come forward after random sampling at its Beijing branch found their visas were fraudulently obtained.They’ve been studying at 20 English language schools in Auckland, but there’s no indication the providers were involved.
English New Zealand chairman Darren Conway says the matter needs to be put into perspective.
“It’s 200 students against 80 – 90,000 students that would be in the country every year from overseas, from literally thousands of Asian students.”
An immigration lawyer says the fact the Chinese students are here on fraudulent visas reflects badly on New Zealand.
Marcus Beveridge from Queen City Law says a lot of cowboy operators get shut down regularly.
“For all the stake holders you don’t want outcomes like this because it reflects badly on our country and on our ability to attract further students to New Zealand, so it’s not a good look.”
However, Mr Beveridge says the industry is self-regulating and is sure there’ll still be a number of wealthy foreign students who want to study here.
Immigration New Zealand says it appears two agents in China are responsible for the visa fraud. It involves fake qualifications and falsified bank statements.
The New Zealand First leader Winston Peters wants an inquiry into the immigration scam because he believes it’s just the tip of the iceberg.
“It would identify the inappropriateness of in effect privatising this innovation service, putting it in the hands of others who are now are seemingly in control of our border security, the legalities of entry into this country.”
Mr Peters says immigration has been one of the worst departments in the country for a long time.
“Politicians refuse to address the issue because they’re too scared to offend some immigrant groups when in fact those who are seriously here from immigrant societies do understand what a proper immigration and passport and visa service look like.”
The Government says the system works because it was uncovered due to random sampling, but Winston Peters wants a full inquiry.
“Well if that’s the Government’s defence, then that’s a disgrace. The fact is everyone should be checked out who is coming here to ensure that they’re here legitimately, with a legal right to be here and (that) proper processes are proved between our government and other governments as well.”
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For further comments or enquries, please contact Marcus Beveridge (09 970 8810 / 0274 877 332 / firstname.lastname@example.org)
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