The Department of Overseas Affairs has warned the potential of Australia’s prisoner swap deal with China could be jeopardised if the Lawyer-Standard, George Brandis, grants businessman Matthew Ng an early release from prison.
Mr Ng was arrested in Guangzhou in 2010 after refusing to offer his $ 100 million stake in the travel firm, GZL, back again to the Chinese govt at cost value.
He was convicted of bribery and embezzlement a 12 months later on and sentenced to 11.five years’ jail.
In 2014, he turned the first Australian to reward from a prisoner swap deal in between Australia and China and is now serving out the relaxation of his sentence at the St Heliers Correction Centre in the NSW Hunter Valley.
Mr Ng has always preserved his innocence, and given that returning to Australia has pleaded for an early release from jail or a pardon.
In August, Mr Ng’s legal professionals produced a formal application for an early release, based on exceptional conditions underneath the Crime Act like his diagnosis with Publish Traumatic Anxiety Problem and a main depressive disorder, the volume of time he has previously served in China and the disproportionate length of his sentence.
But yesterday the Attorney-General’s office wrote to Mr Ng’s legal professionals rejecting the application, citing tips from the two the NSW Wellness Division and Office of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).
“DFAT advises that the Chinese authorities have created distinct they are carefully checking the first productive transfer circumstances and will see them as take a look at cases for potential prisoner transfer amongst Australia and China,” the Lawyer-General’s department wrote.
“DFAT’s view is the granting of early launch or pardon would really most likely have a damaging impact on the procedure of the [prisoner transfer] scheme and prejudice other existing or long term cases.”
It is understood there are about 80 Australians imprisoned in China.
Ng experienced inhumane remedy in Chinese prison: legal professionals
The Attorney-General’s section also cast doubt on the severity of Mr Ng’s mental ailment, expressing he had not sought any aid for psychological problems at St Heliers and “appeared to be controlling his mental wellness conditions sufficiently”.
“Psychology advises … they are not likely to assist a ask for for early release primarily based on psychological health grounds owing to the commonality of described diagnoses and signs and symptoms in the correctional environment,” the office wrote.
That is at odds with health-related guidance received by Mr Ng’s legal professionals which states the “professional psychological treatment method of the type necessary by Mr Ng is not obtainable in a correctional facility” and goes on to say Mr Ng requires remedy “as a subject of urgency”.
Mr Ng’s sentence expires in 2022, but he will be eligible for parole in August next year.
His legal professionals argue there are adequate extraordinary situation to release Mr Ng from prison early presented his inhumane remedy, and trauma experienced, during his 1,475 times in prison in China.
In their letter to the Legal professional-Common, they mentioned Mr Ng was held in a jail cell with 18 other people and compelled to share a mattress with an additional inmate there had been no flushing bogs or showers and he was physically assaulted on a few situations.
Mr Ng’s 2nd relationship has also damaged down not too long ago and previous 12 months, even though imprisoned in China, he was knowledgeable that his eldest daughter Isabella experienced died, creating him a wonderful deal of distress.
His lawyers have right up until January 5 to respond to the department’s letter.
Subject areas: criminal offense, prisons-and-punishment, world-politics, federal-government, australia, china
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