Minister guest of overstayer

MARTIN VAN BEYNEN
Last updated 13:44 19/11/2011
Associate Immigration Minister Kate Wilkinson
Associate Immigration Minister Kate Wilkinson

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Associate Immigration Minister Kate Wilkinson has appeared on a radio station run by one of Christchurch's most high-profile overstayers.

At the end of July, Wilkinson appeared on the "global" Radio La Famia, which is operated by Harmon Wilfred through a charitable trust.

Wilfred renounced his American citizenship in 2005, after arriving in New Zealand in 2001 with his third wife, Caroline Dare-Wilfred, who has a private income from her family's foodstuffs empire in Canada.

Immigration NZ has for many years tried to deport Wilfred, who has applied for New Zealand citizenship.

Wilkinson said yesterday she knew of Wilfred, but had not checked his connection with the station. She would not be appearing on it again, she said.

Both Wilkinson and Radio La Famia have advertised their association on their respective websites.

Radio La Famia has posted a picture of the visit on its website, saying: "Kate confirms support during her recent visit to our studio. Her words 'well done' and 'all the best' [for] conveying positive and information news to our community."

Wilkinson's appearance has continued a string of government contacts with the foundation and its offshoots.

Work and Income confirmed this year it had paid $79,000 to La Famia Creative Arts in 2010 and this year Inland Revenue moved into Wigram Manor, from which Wilfred runs his charities. A number of staff employed by Wilfred through his various entities have this year taken personal grievances against him.

Wilfred believes a return to the United States would be inhumane because of a vendetta against him by high- placed officials.

The vendetta, he believes, stems from his alleged exposure of several United States scams, including the siphoning of billions of dollars to the personal pockets of CIA agents, politicians and other government officials.

He has three children in the US from two previous marriages.

He has set up a website, called the World Wide Web Court of Justice, to air his complaints against the US justice system.

His online biography begins: "Once upon a time a male child was born of the human race on the planet Earth in a land called Usaria."

Wilfred's latest scheme is the formation of the Christchurch redevelopment committee, which advocates Christchurch becoming a special economic zone.

Wilfred said yesterday his application for citizenship was still pending and Immigration had made no attempts to deport him.

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- The Press

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