No Kiwi rapists or murderers on Christmas Island

THERE are no rapists or murderers among the Kiwi detainees at the controversial Christmas Island detention centre.

The Australian Government provided Justice Minister Amy Adams with a detailed breakdown of the crimes New Zealand men being held at the centre had committed, Radio NZ reported.

The list of offences includes manslaughter, armed robbery, grievous bodily harm and assaulting a child or wife with a weapon.

One New Zealander had been convicted of indecently assaulting a child.

The news comes in the wake of Prime Minister John Key accusing Labour of "backing rapists" in an extraordinary attack in Parliament on Tuesday.

The outburst - which occurred while under questioning by Labour leader Andrew Little - has sparked controversy with MPs staging walk-outs from the house for two days.

Mr Key said: "Some of the [detainees] are rapists, some of them are child molesters, and some of them are murderers.

"These are the people that the Labour Party are saying are more important to support than New Zealanders who deserve protecting when they come back here.

"Mr Davis, if you want to put yourself on the side of sex offenders, go ahead my son, but we'll defend New Zealanders."

Labour MPs yelled that Mr Key had "lost the plot".

When Mr Little questioned why New Zealand did not demand more action from Australia, Mr Key launched another attack.

"You back the rapists," the Prime Minister said, before being cut off by the Speaker.

Mr Key has since told media he did not believe he had overstepped the mark, and stood by his claim that many New Zealand detainees had committed serious crimes.

Australia's Immigration Minister Peter Dutton told Australian media on Tuesday that out of the 200 detainees on Christmas Island, there were four rapists. Their nationality was not known.

Ms Adams told Radio NZ that Mr Key's statements were based on previous reports provided by the Australian Government.

"What we haven't known until now one or two hours is exactly what the specific make-up was on Christmas Island.

"What the Prime Minister and I have referred to, to date, has been the category of offenders we are talking about in the wider context - contains some very, very serious offenders."

Australian immigration minister Peter Dutton previously told ABC no New Zealanders convicted of minor offences were on Christmas Island.

The revelation comes as Australia removed seven New Zealanders from the Christmas Island detention centre and transfered them to a high-maximum prison in Western Australia, where they may face prosecution.

Mr Dutton said the men were "among a group of extreme-risk individuals who are alleged to have been involved in the disturbance at the centre".

They were taken to the airport in handcuffs, telling reporters they were from New Zealand.

Mr Dutton said they were on a charter flight accompanied by security officers. "Restraints are used where appropriate for the safety and security of detainees, staff and the aircraft."

Riots kicked off at the centre on Monday morning, after refugees asked officials what happened to Fazel Chegeni whose body was found on Sunday following his escape from the detention centre on Friday.

Police stormed the centre on Tuesday after reports of detainees barricading themselves into compounds and bracing themselves for a fight, armed with chainsaws, petrol bombs and machetes as weapons.

Footage released by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection shows carnage in the wake of the unrest, including smashed windows, blackened walls from fire and widespread damage.

It also appears parts of the corrugated iron wall and roof has been peeled back.


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