Tribunal: Senior Member Kira Raif

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) refused to grant Australian citizenship to the applicant. To be eligible for Australian citizenship, a person must satisfy the Department they are of good character.[1] In making their original decision, the Department was not satisfied that the applicant was a person of good character. The applicant applied to the AAT for a review of this decision.

The applicant was born in Iran in December 1970 and entered Australia in March 2011. He was granted a permanent visa in April 2012. In 2015, he was convicted of assault occasioning bodily harm, stalking and common assault.

The applicant claimed the offences related to the difficult relationship he had with his previous partner and his use of alcohol. He claimed that he had since taken positive steps to stabilise his life by entering into a genuine relationship, ceasing to drink and engaging in employment. The applicant provided evidence of his residential arrangements and employment as well as various character references from the applicant’s family, friends and colleagues. The applicant also claimed that he had undergone an anger management program and that he had not had any problems with the law since his convictions.

The AAT was not satisfied that the applicant was of good character and affirmed the Department’s decision. The AAT pointed to the applicant’s past conduct, his failure to truthfully answer questions in the citizenship application, his apparent failure to appreciate the seriousness of his past conduct, and the applicant’s willingness to engage in immigration fraud. The AAT was not satisfied that the applicant demonstrated that he could uphold and obey the law.

The AAT affirmed the Department’s decision.

Read the full decision on AustLII.

 

[1] Subsection 21(2)(h) of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007