Monday, 15 October 2007

Lawyers want a probe into Haneefgate

With brilliant timing, just as John Howard had called an election, Mohammed Haneef's lawyers want an investigation (1) into how so much inaccurate information came to be levelled against Dr Haneef:

Peter Russo, Dr Haneef's lawyer, has welcomed the finding and is of the opinion that it was a flawed case from the very beginning.

''The difficulty with what's happened really now is it has left it open. It's really created more questions than it has actually answered,'' he has been quoted as saying by the Australian media.

''Perhaps it's something that needs to have an inquiry because the biggest difficulty we've got is that we don't know where the misinformation came from,'' Russo added. (2)

This follows an independent review which found that the case against Haneef contained "errors of fact" (3). It is not unresonable to wnat to know how so many errrors, of such magnitude, happened. The investigation should also cover why the police and ministers were so willing to leak material on Haneef, of course.

Howard's decision to call an election for the 24th of Novemeber, in the immediate aftermath of the Haneef appeal, scheduled for November 15th (4), looks even stranger and even more suicidal. Perhaps he's hoping is party will get such a trouncing that Costello won't be around to depose him.

And Kevin Andrews continues to behave in an apalling manner:

Meanwhile, in an unrelated case, a Federal Court judge has criticised the Australian Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews over the 'involuntary removal' of a man to New Zealand. In what is being considered as an ‘unprecedented’ attack, the judge has gone to the extent of calling the Immigration Minister's action as "truly disgraceful." (5)
Business as usual. But hopefully, not for much longer.

1 - "Haneef’s lawyers seek probe into charges," unattributed article on, 13th of October, 2007.(
2 - ibid.
3 - "Australia 'terror doctor' case flawed: review," unattributed AFP article, 12th of October, 2007.
4 - article, op. cit.
5 - ibid.

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