Oz PM office still withholding 15 documents from Haneefs lawyers

June 17th, 2008 - 12:32 pm ICT by ANI  

Melbourne, June 17 (ANI): Lawyers for Indian born doctor Mohamed Haneef have claimed that new documents show the Australian Prime Ministers Department was involved in trying to suppress information about the case.

But Dr Haneefs lawyers want access to another 15 documents, including an options paper prepared for the previous Howard Government.

Rod Hodgson, Dr Haneef’s lawyer, said some of the documents they have obtained show the Office of Prime Minister and Cabinet moved to stop the release of the options paper.

Dr Haneefs lawyers are appearing before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal in Brisbane on Tuesday to try to get access to more documents from the Immigration Department.

Lawyers have been given more than 250 immigration department documents but another 15 are being withheld.

Dr Haneef’s legal team plans to provide the documents to the judicial inquiry into the handling of their clients case, the Herald Sun reported.

Immigration department lawyers told the tribunal that they could not release about 15 documents being sought by Dr Haneefs lawyers because they either contained national security information or advice to former Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews.

They argued that the release of the documents would not assist the public.

The former Gold Coast-based doctor was accused of a terrorism related offence last year but the charge was later dropped. (ANI)

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