This is why people become lawyers

Good news tonight in the High Court, with Justice Hayne granting an injunction temporarily preventing the removal of asylum seekers to Malaysia:

At 8pm tonight, Justice Kenneth Hayne of the High Court granted limited interlocutory (interim) relief (an injunction) to 41 plaintiffs who are people who risk being removed to Malaysia under the Malaysia solution. They are citizens of Afghanistan and Pakistan. A number of them (around 6) are children.

At the outset, Hayne J suggested that he should consider granting interlocutory relief to 4.15 tomorrow so the matter come back before him for further argument at 2.15 tomorrow.

Debbie Mortimer SC for the Plaintiffs stated that there were 16 plaintiffs scheduled for removal tomorrow at 11.30am. There has been no decision made in respect of other plaintiffs…

In the end, the Plaintiffs were seeking two strands of interlocutory relief:

1. an injunction stopping removal to Malaysia

2. an injunction requiring the Commonwealth to afford the asylum seekers a reasonable chance to get legal advice

Hayne J did not believe it necessary to grant the second stem of the relief, because s 265 obliges the Minister to do so.

But he did grant the first strand of relief, saying that “[the asylum seekers’] claims should not be defeated by their removal from Australia if I cannot say those claims are hopeless”

His Honour expressed no view on the merit of the arguments put before him tonight, but could not say that they are without merit. His Honour stated that the plaintiffs should have the limited relief they seek.

Jessie Taylor goes through this evening’s proceeding in more detail at the above link.

We’ll see what comes tomorrow. That injunction won’t be extended indefinitely – the real fight, on whether the policy is really lawful (particularly the exercise of s198A(3) of the Migration Act) is yet to come.

But let’s be thankful that there are means for the rights of the most vulnerable to be protected from the capricious exercise of power by the unprincipled. This is what inspires people to become lawyers.

7 responses to “This is why people become lawyers

  1. Could this mean, if successful, that we have to take all that prove they are refugees.

  2. Catching up: which is a problem, because?

  3. ___This is not a duplicate___

    What amazes me is how quickly these people can be processed when the govt thinks they’re sending them to Malaysia. All of a sudden they can process in a reasonable time frame.

    Lawyers – Goodonya for this, Australia in general, people are more important than cattle, remember that next time you say ‘fair go’!

  4. narcoticmusing

    Catching up – it means that the Govt can’t just bypass the right to due process in a lawful country by sneaking people out of the country before they have a) a chance to exercise that right and b) before the Government has fulfilled its own obligations to provide for that right to be exercised.

  5. My in-family legal support (daughter) has worked on immigration issues for the past couple of years and comes home at night distressed at the cases she is working on.

    I have no idea why anyone would become a lawyer working on these cases.

  6. Because they want to help people who desperately need it.

  7. What of the other half of the “Malaysia solution” – the larger share of processed refugees in KLs camps that we were to take and settle?
    Can we still do it?

    Could this mean, if successful, that we have to take all that prove they are refugees.

    I think you’ll find that we were obliged anyway – the elephant in the room being the Convention and the handful of treaties we signed to that effect.

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