ONE BLAST CHANCE

Ex­clu­sive Mag­is­trate went easy so vi­o­lent refugee could stay ... now po­lice al­lege he wants to blow up Aus­tralia

The Courier-Mail - - FRONT PAGE - RE­NEE VIELLARIS & KEITH MOOR

A VI­O­LENT refugee has been able to un­leash chaos across two states – in­clud­ing al­legedly threat­en­ing to bomb Aus­tralia and mow down po­lice with a truck – af­ter a soft-touch Queens­land mag­is­trate gave him a light sen­tence so he wouldn’t be de­ported.

Mag­is­trate Joan White talked openly in court about en­sur­ing Ira­nian refugee Be­hzad Bashiri did not lose his visa be­fore giv­ing him a sus­pended sen­tence for fright­en­ing crimes in Queens­land. Now po­lice have warned they have “grave fears for the safety of the pub­lic” if he’s not locked up.

Bashiri (inset), 35, who is in NSW cus­tody await­ing fur­ther charges, had his pro­tec­tion visa can­celled by Im­mi­gra­tion Min­is­ter Peter Dut­ton in Oc­to­ber af­ter he was lob­bied by Vic­to­rian de­tec­tives.

The crimes and state of mind of Bashiri had be­come so alarm­ing that his own psy­chi­a­trist alerted au­thor­i­ties that he was a threat to po­lice and or­di­nary Aus­tralians.

The Courier-Mail can re­veal that, af­ter ar­riv­ing by boat in 2011, and be­ing granted a pro­tec­tion visa, Bashiri was be­fore Ms White (pic­tured, far right) in Been­leigh Mag­is­trates Court in Oc­to­ber 2012.

Queens­land and Vic­to­rian po­lice are still reel­ing from the wholly sus­pended sen­tence handed down by Ms White five years ago.

The court was told he walked into Ac­cess Em­ploy­ment Ser­vices in Lo­gan in Septem­ber 2012 and warned he would be back the next day to set him­self and the build­ing alight.

The next day he turned up with a three-litre plas­tic milk bot­tle of fuel and a lighter.

He yelled that he was go­ing to kill him­self and started splash­ing petrol around.

Over two days of hear­ings, Ms White spoke openly in court with two duty lawyers about mak­ing it eas­ier for Bashiri. She spoke about how tough it was for refugees and how they could keep him off the radar of Im­mi­gra­tion De- part­ment of­fi­cials. In 2012, a year’s jail was a bench­mark for refugees’ visas to be re­voked and de­port them.

Ms White ac­knowl­edged he faced se­ri­ous charges harges and said: “The other al­ter­na­tive is a pe­riod d of im­pris­on­ment. nt. It’d be wholly ly sus­pended, but I don’t know how that’s go­ing to af­fect his visa?”

“My good­ness, ss, it would drive any­one yone to dis­trac­tion, what at hap­pened to him,” she said, be­fore adding refugees had some dif­fi­cul­ties that “we can’t even un­der­stand, re­ally”.

Af­ter a six-month, wholly sus­pended sen­tence, Bashiri em­barked on a crime spree that in­cluded threat­en­ing a Queens­land fe­male po­lice of­fi­cer and her daugh­ter. Brim­bank de­tec­tive Scott Sheedy tol told Sun­shine Mag­is­trates is­trate Court in Vic­to­ria a Queens­land se­nior sen con­sta­ble who wh in­ves­ti­gated the th in­ci­dent in Lo­gan Lo was later tar­geted tar on­line by Bashiri. Bas Vic­to­rian Vi po­lice also submitted sub ev­i­dence Bashiri threat­ened threa to bomb Aus­tralia; warned a Vic­to­ria Po­lice of­fi­cer that he knew where he lived, what car he drove and that he in­tended mur­der­ing the of­fi­cer’s wife and daugh­ter; and said he would kill Aus­tralian em­bassy staff in Iran.

Sen-Con­sta­ble Sheedy told Sun­shine Mag­is­trates Court dur­ing Bashiri’s bail ap­pli­ca­tion that po­lice held “grave fears for the safety of the pub­lic” if Bashiri were to be re­leased. “The ap­pli­cant has a proven his­tory of com­mit­ting se­ri­ous crime and has dis­played the mo­ti­va­tion and ca­pa­bil­i­ties to use vi­o­lence to sup­port his ide­ol­ogy.

The court heard Bashiri was con­victed in Sun­shine Mag­is­trates Court in June on charges in­clud­ing stalk­ing, as­sault­ing po­lice, re­sist­ing ar­rest, com­mit­ting an in­dictable of­fence while on bail and act­ing in a dis­rup­tive man­ner while in a po­lice jail.

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