Did Haneef's SIM expire?

Tony Moore
August 8, 2007 - 2:40PM
Federal Court Judge Jeffrey Spender today asked if the mobile phone SIM card allegedly used by Dr Mohamed Haneef's second cousins in terrorist activities in Glascow had actually expired in August 2006.

Judge Spender asked how a SIM card would expire, as he continues an application hearing by Dr Haneef's lawyers to have his visa returned.

Dr Haneef is alleged to have left his mobile phone SIM card with his second cousins, who are accused of being involved in the failed car bomb attack on Glascow Airport on June 30.

Immediately before lunch, barrister Stephen Keim, for Mr Haneef - not present in the court during the visa application - questioned the wisdom of Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews' decision to revoke Dr Haneef's visa and have him detained for a trial.

Judge Spender said he was not interested in the "wisdom" of the decision, only in the legality of the decision.

It is now likely the hearing will extend into tomorrow.

Earlier, Dr Haneef's legal team described the federal government's "character test" as too broad and allowing too much leeway for guilt by association.

Assisting counsel Darryl Rangiah opened his application by suggesting the character test should also be open to interpretations of an "innocent" nature.

He suggested "innocent" associations included mothers and wives of people involved in criminal acts.

"A football team," Mr Rangiah suggested.

Judge Spender said he understood the suggestion, adding: "The mother of all convicts shipped to Australia. It seems to follow."

The visa application hearing in the Commonwealth Law Court in Brisbane is being heard before a packed courtroom.

Judge Spender has to determine if Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews acted within his discretionary power when cancelling Dr Haneef's work visa.

Judge Spender described today's hearing as a "threshold" case.

Mr Rangiah has also suggested in his submission that the removal of the words "is not of good character" from federal legislation in 1999, and the effective substitution of the phrase "this person does not pass the character test" was inappropriate.

Later Judge Spender asked Mr Rangiah whether Dr Haneef's association with his two second cousins, Sabeel and Kafeel Ahmed, allegedly involved in terrorist events in Glasgow, might mean he should fail the character test.

"He had an ongoing association with them," Mr Rangiah said.

Judge Spender said it could be argued that Dr Haneef was an associate of criminals, who were involved in criminal acts.

"You might think that was a risk to Australia, his remaining in Australia," the judge said.

Dr Haneef was arrested at Brisbane Airport on July 2 and detained for 12 days by Australian Federal Police.

The charge against Dr Haneef was dropped and he was released on July 27 when he returned to India.



Our comment-

This is what you call guilt by association.

In Canada if you are a male, you are guilty for being born with testicles and forever dammed as a parent if you become divorced from a woman who wants to terminate your relationship with your children.