Kiwi sex predator escapes deportation
A CONVICTED sex predator and former drug trafficker who injected a teenage girl with ice on the Sunshine Coast has beaten a deportation order due to his "good character".
Adam Carey, a 49-year-old Queensland resident with 39 criminal convictions, has won the right to Australian citizenship after using NSW Legal Aid to win a case in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.
The New Zealand citizen was jailed 16 years ago for trafficking drugs - and then sent to prison again three years later for having sex with an underage girl on the Sunshine Coast.
Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton blasted the AAT decision yesterday as out of step with community standards.
Mr Dutton rejected Carey's application for Australian citizenship in 2016 on character grounds, but the AAT has now ruled that "past offences do not preclude a finding of current good character".
"His domestic world fell apart following the murder of his partner's son in 1999,'' AAT senior member Peter Taylor SC states in his decision, published yesterday.
"His carnal knowledge offence and his significant drug use, occurred in the aftermath of that traumatic change in his life.
"I am satisfied that Mr Carey is, at the present time, a person of good character''.
The AAT ruling says that in 2002, when Carey was 33, he introduced a 15-year-old girl to methamphetamine and began a sexual relationship with her, while plying her with marijuana and ice.
The girl's parents took her interstate, where she was treated in hospital for her drug addiction.
But the teenager returned to Queensland the following year and "reconnected'' with Carey, who "injected her with methamphetamine'', the AAT ruling states.
"She reported the incident to police and he was subsequently arrested,'' it says.
In 2005, Carey was sentenced to five years' jail after pleading guilty to unlawful carnal knowledge of an underage girl.
He spent 20 months in prison before lodging an appeal, which was dismissed.
In 2015, Carey married his long-term girlfriend and took her on a honeymoon to Bali and The Philippines.
But on the way home, he failed to disclose his convictions on an incoming passenger card at Townsville Airport, so immigration officials cancelled his New Zealand visa and sent him to immigration detention on Christmas Island.
The AAT decision said a senior Australian Border Force officer had sent Carey a formal commendation letter in 2017 praising him as a "positive role model for other detainees''.
The Immigration Department cancelled Carey's visa in 2007, but the Federal Court reinstated it.
Mr Dutton yesterday said he was unable to overturn the AAT ruling.
"This is yet another example of the AAT making decisions that are not in line with community standards,'' he said.
"I have been fighting for changes to the Citizenship Act for over a year to prevent cases like this, but Labor won't support it.''
Carey, who has been released from immigration detention, could not be contacted yesterday.