Free Australian Tala Pauga: Australian parliament to examine Australia's Extradition Laws and Compatibility with Human Rights

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To the Honourable President and members of the Senate in Parliament assembled:

The petition of the undersigned shows:

Noting:

1.            The Joint Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights is empowered to examine Acts for compatibility with human rights, and to report to both Houses of the Parliament on that issue and section 7(b) of the Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Act 2011 so provides.

2.            The Independent State of Samoa has made a request of Australia dated 6th April 2020 by diplomatic note (“the extradition request”) for the extradition of an Australian citizen within the meaning of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 and subject of the Queen within the meaning of the Australian Constitution (“the Aussie”).

3.            Talalelei Pauga ("the Aussie") was within Australian territory at all times material to the conduct alleged to constitute an offence against the laws of the Independent State of Samoa.

4.            The Aussie has never been charged or questioned by Australian law enforcement authorities in respect of the alleged conduct.

5.            On 20th August 2020 the Aussie was arrested by Australian Federal Police on an extradition arrest warrant issued by an Australian Magistrate pursuant to section 12 of the Extradition Act 1988  (“the Extradition Act”) and has been held in custody since that date.

6.            That the Extradition Act implements a “no evidence” model of extradition whereby the foreign nation is not required to provide evidence in support of its allegations.

7.            That in determining eligibility for extradition of an extradition candidate section 19(5) of the Extradition Act provides that in the proceedings, the person to whom the proceedings relate is not entitled to adduce, and the magistrate or Judge is not entitled to receive, evidence to contradict an allegation that the person has engaged in conduct constituting an extradition offence for which the surrender of the person is sought.

8.            That the Foreign Minister of the Independent State of Samoa is The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi.

9.            The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi has also been Prime Minister of Samoa since 1998.

10.          The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi has the following Fa'amatai titles, with most of them from the village of Lepa, Samoa: (a)         Tuilaepa  (b)  Alofa atu (c) Lupesoliai (d) Neioti – this title is from the village of Falevao, Samoa (e) Aiono(f) Fatialofa (g) Lolofie (h) Galumalemana (Vaitele) – this title is from the village of Faleata, Samoa (i) Aueluā.

11.          The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi is also the Minister in charge of the: (a) Public Service Commission (b) Legislative Assembly (c) Office of the Attorney General.  The Attorney General are responsible for criminal prosecutions of allegations and complaints made to the Samoa Police Services.  (d) Office of the Ombudsman (e) Samoa Law Reform Commission (f) Samoa Bureau of Statistic.

12.          The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi was the Minister of Police at the time the allegations against the Aussie were made and investigated.  Samoa Police Services are under the Ministry of Police and are responsible for investigating the allegations.  

13.          The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi was the Minister for the Attorney General in Samoa when the extradition of the Aussie was sought.

14.          The target of the alleged conduct by the Aussie in Australia is said in the extradition request to be The Honourable Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele.

15.          The sentence for the crime said to exist under Samoan law is life imprisonment.

16.          The Australian Government provides funds for the improvement of the Samoan Justice system.   

 

And your petitioner requests that:

1.                   The Senate refer this petition to Joint Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights for inquiry and report in respect of the operation of the Extradition Act 1988 for compatibility with human rights.

2.                   The Senate review the grant of no-evidence status to extradition requests from Samoa and requesting that the Senate revoke the Extradition (Samoa) Regulations 2010.


Uluata Ekuale of Samoa Solidarity International Group (SSIG) Samoa Inc.    Contact the author of the petition

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