News National Peter Dutton rejects Greens’ claims he misled Parliament over au pair visas
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Peter Dutton rejects Greens’ claims he misled Parliament over au pair visas

Peter Dutton has defended himself in parliament. Photo: ABC
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Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has denied misleading Parliament over granting visas for two au pairs.

Mr Dutton has been under pressure over his decision to approve visas for two women who had been stopped by Border Force officials who believed they would breach the conditions of their tourist visas by working.

Greens MP Adam Bandt has foreshadowed a motion of no confidence against Mr Dutton, saying the minister misled Parliament over the issue.

Mr Bandt asked Mr Dutton earlier this year if he could rule out any connection between himself and the people he helped by letting the au pairs stay.

Mr Dutton denied to the House of Representatives that he had any personal connection.

He told the chamber in March he could “categorically rule out any personal connection or any other relationship” with the employers of either au pair.

But it later emerged that one of the employers had been in the Queensland Police at the same time as Mr Dutton.

Today, Mr Dutton told Parliament that Mr Bandt’s claim that he had misled the House is completely false.

“I did not have a personal connection or any type of relationship with the people involved in these matters,” Mr Dutton said.

To the best of my knowledge, I have not socialised, met or had personal contact with the man involved.

“I finished work with the Queensland Police Service in July 1999, at that time from my recollection, there were 5500 police officers within the Queensland Police Service,” Mr Dutton said.

“No reasonable person could come to the conclusion that my professional association through working in the same large public service some 20 years ago constitutes either a personal connection or relationship.

A Senate committee is investigating the use of Mr Dutton’s ministerial powers to grant visas to the two European au pairs.

Former Border Force commissioner Roman Quaedvlieg made a submission to the committee last week saying he was contacted by Mr Dutton’s chief of staff asking what could be done to help “the boss’s mate”.

Mr Dutton responded at the time that it was a fabrication and that Mr Quaedvlieg was bitter at losing his job.

Mr Dutton has reiterated that in Parliament today, saying “despite his evidence otherwise, no-one in my office spoke with the ABF commission on this matter”.

-ABC