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Old 30-12-2011, 19:49   #271
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

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Not even close. Customs guys can do stuff that the cops can't even dream about - chase, board, search, sieze. Warrrant ? Huh ? They don't need no warrant. Probable cause ? That's only on TV.

It isn't just Australia. Every country that inherited British law has the same system.
I wrote to the Minister responsible with a raft of questions on a number of matters, here is the response to a question about boarding boats that are owned by Australians that have never left australian waters. It would appear that the Minister (of course this response was no doubt in fact written by a departmental official) believes that ACS officers need to be acting in the exercise of the principles of the ACT for Sect 185 powers to come into play. I will of course be keeping a copy of the letter on board.
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Old 30-12-2011, 20:23   #272
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

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I wrote to the Minister responsible with a raft of questions on a number of matters,
What where the other 5 if you would like to share.
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Old 30-12-2011, 20:48   #273
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

Fairly esoteric issues surrounding Act policy with a couple of lead in questions to this particular matter.
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Old 30-12-2011, 20:56   #274
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

The public servant did not answer your question but don't be put off because they rarely do. Ministers never answer letters like that. The author's initials will probably be incorporated into the government reference number on the first page.

Without reason or warrant the customs guys can chase, board, detain, search, sieze goods, interrogate people, copy documents. If they want to move the ship or arrest a person then it is necessary that the officer " reasonably suspects . . . . an offence ".

That phrase is deliberately vague in order for it to be hard for them to be wrong.
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Old 30-12-2011, 21:48   #275
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

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The public servant did not answer your question but don't be put off because they rarely do. Ministers never answer letters like that. The author's initials will probably be incorporated into the government reference number on the first page.

Without reason or warrant the customs guys can chase, board, detain, search, sieze goods, interrogate people, copy documents. If they want to move the ship or arrest a person then it is necessary that the officer " reasonably suspects . . . . an offence ".

That phrase is deliberately vague in order for it to be hard for them to be wrong.
I realize that - hence my reference above to being written by an official, I have written enough MIN CORR myself to understand that.

On the substantive issue it is reasonably clear that ACS accepts they must utilise powers in furtherance of the act, no surprise really as this is the fundamental principle in the exercise of extra judicial power in Australia.

Anyway - not gunna get into any further discussion on the matter - people can read the act and the ministers comments (whilst it may have ben written by an AO6 in the bowels of the agency, the minister signed it) and draw there own conclusions.
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Old 15-01-2012, 03:59   #276
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

Arrived back in Cairns. Customs where on-board for 15 min. But Quarantine spend a lot of time and look in every locker I had. Customs have been very good for me the last 18 times I have returned. I have a filling that the mag. you read have something against Customs.
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Old 15-01-2012, 04:24   #277
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

The Coastal Passage is well known as a "Whingefest" over here, a bit of a joke amongst the Marine industry to be honest, relying almost entirely on "Letters to the Editor' for it's information, which of course is not a good source of unbiased fact.

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Old 15-01-2012, 09:11   #278
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

TCP frequently runs inscendiary stuff, however, The mere fact that this topic has generated 277 responses, some positive and some negative, is an indicator of some basis of reality. The latest issue http://thecoastalpassage.com/papers/E-TCP52.pdf has a very serious incident covered. It resulted in a formal applogy from customs and a 100,000 dollar settlement for false arrest and damages. Nealy all of the horror stories I have run into seem to come from the Northern territories especially Queensland. We have considered that the best entry may be from the south. I spent a couple of hours at Noonsite reading some of the discussion topics related to clearing in and customs. Its clear that there is a percieved bad reputation. Most of the reports, however, were positive. The read between the lines is that there may be a couple of bad eggs and that some of these individuals may still be employed by customs despite their being at the center of more than one costly dispute. I also noticed that most bad reports were 2008 or older and that there were no recent negative reports. I also didn't find anything negative at SSCA
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Old 22-01-2012, 15:38   #279
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

We just imported a boat and I have to say that although there was a deal of paperwork the whole exercise was a breeze.
These people are just doing a job. Take your preparation for meeting them seriously, no food onboard etc etc and the exercise will go smothly.
Take the wrong attitude with them and you get what you deserve.
Give them respect and you will sail through (pun intended).
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Old 22-01-2012, 19:41   #280
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

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We just imported a boat and I have to say that although there was a deal of paperwork the whole exercise was a breeze.
These people are just doing a job. Take your preparation for meeting them seriously, no food onboard etc etc and the exercise will go smothly.
Take the wrong attitude with them and you get what you deserve.
Give them respect and you will sail through (pun intended).

tried the respect thing that they deserve on the fist time in.....
So when you get a "rookie"
inspector.Asked the lad how long he had ben with customs....6 months......
and he tears your boat apart to the point of all your pillows/cusions are un-stuffed.and not put back together...
Exactly how much RESPECT do you want me to give him?
Respect is earnes.not granted by a badge.
Mark
PS.Spends my money elsewhere.........
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Old 22-01-2012, 20:28   #281
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

mark, sounds like you are going to get a bit of cash for your troubles, the ombudsman here loves to hear about this sort of occurrence. Here is there address, will be well worth the effort, The ombudsman is like having a Barrister go into bat for you. http://www.ombudsman.qld.gov.au/Head...ContactUs.aspx
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Old 22-01-2012, 20:54   #282
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

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mark, sounds like you are going to get a bit of cash for your troubles, the ombudsman here loves to hear about this sort of occurrence. Here is there address, will be well worth the effort, The ombudsman is like having a Barrister go into bat for you. Contact Us
This post is complete misinformation. Cash? Barrister? Nothing of the sort. Read the info on the site for accurate advice on the role of the ombusdman's office.
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Old 22-01-2012, 21:07   #283
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

The Queensland Ombudsman can't order payment of money to anyone. He can recommend it but can't force it.

Anyway, why bother with him ? He has no power over Customs.
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Old 22-01-2012, 22:12   #284
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

I can assure you that a complaint to the ombudsman is the best way to go. An investigation, if the complaint is found to have substance will be instigated, and all findings are passed on to the complainant. If the ombudsman is not happy in the way the complaint is investigated (normally by the internal branch of customs) then it will use other agencies. If your claims are correct the Ombudsman's Office would like to hear from you.

Edit: wrong ombudsman should have been the Commonwealth Ombudsman http://www.ombudsman.gov.au/
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Old 22-01-2012, 22:26   #285
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Re: Australian Customs - Deterrent to Visiting Oz ?

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The Coastal Passage is well known as a "Whingefest" over here, a bit of a joke amongst the Marine industry to be honest, relying almost entirely on "Letters to the Editor' for it's information, which of course is not a good source of unbiased fact.

Coops.
I've met a lot of people who refer to it as "The Back Passage"!
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