Dutton boots bikies out of Australia
THREE bikies have been booted from Australia in the past week, including one linked to the infamous Broadbeach brawl, it can be revealed.
The news comes as Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton announced an expansion of Operation Sovereign Borders' aerial surveillance and on-water patrols.
Mr Dutton is doubling down on his "tough cop on the beat" image after a turbulent past three weeks.
In that time he lost a bid to become prime minister, saw the first asylum seeker boat arrive on Australian shores in almost four years and dealt with a Senate inquiry into controversy surround his granting tourist visas to two European au pairs.
The Courier-Mail understands that 28-year-old Bandido bikie Jim Thacker, who launched the Beenleigh chapter of the notorious gang, is back in New Zealand after being deported within the past four days.
Australian Border Force officers detained Thacker after Mr Dutton cancelled his visa in August on character grounds relating to his role in the 2013 Broadbeach brawl.
In 2014, Thacker was sentenced to 150 hours community service after pleading guilty to riot, though he was not involved in physical violence against police.
It is understood that Adelaide Mongol bikie Andrew Peter Stevens has also been deported to the UK after recently losing a two-year Federal Court battle to remain in Australia after his visa was cancelled in June 2016.
Stevens also had his visa cancelled on character grounds, having been the Mongols sergeant-at-arms in Adelaide, but had lived in Australia for more than 40 years.
It is understood another Brisbane bikie from the Nomads has also been deported to New Zealand.
Mr Dutton said bikie gang members "pose a huge danger" to the community.
"I will do all I can to ensure that outlaw bikies who are foreigners living here on a visa and committing crimes are removed from Australia," he said.
Mr Dutton yesterday said the arrival of a Vietnamese asylum seeker boat last month showed Australia needed to remain vigilant about its borders but all 17 people who came on that vessel had been returned to Vietnam.
"The Australian Government will not tolerate a return to past circumstances under which more than 1200 people died at sea attempting illegal journeys to Australia on unseaworthy vessels," he said.