Road rage killer fights deportation

Last updated 10:54 02/10/2012

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A Tuvalu man who killed a 78-year-old driver in a road rage incident is fighting a deportation decision.

Bio Talakatoa O'Brien pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Jasmatbhai Patel in Mt Albert in 2009 and was released from his three-year jail term in April.

O'Brien has been in New Zealand since 2000 and had been granted residence. He is married to a New Zealand citizen and the couple's daughter, who turned six on Saturday, is also a New Zealand citizen.

In the High Court at Wellington yesterday Matthew Smith, lawyer for O'Brien, asked Justice Simon France to review the ruling of the Immigration and Protection Tribunal which confirmed the decision to deport O'Brien back to Tuvalu.

O'Brien, who is in his early 30s, was studying for a diploma in civil engineering when he was arrested. He has got a job since his release from prison, the judge heard.

In Tuvalu he is unlikely to get a job and would have a subsistence life. O'Brien had been sending money home to family in Tuvalu and if he is sent back they will lose that support and have an extra person to provide for, Smith said.

He stressed the close relationship O'Brien had with his daughter and said that the tribunal had not properly considered the best interests of the daughter.

O'Brien mitigated entrenched "maternal domination" in his wife's family that could cause the girl long-term psychological harm.

The hearing is continuing.

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- The Dominion Post

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