One Love concert promoter Pato Alvarez could be deported from New Zealand after he was convicted on assault charges last week.
The conviction triggers the reactivation of an Immigration NZ liability deportation notice which was suspended for five years in 2015 following two previous convictions for violence.
Immigration New Zealand is not able to discuss the details of an individual case without a privacy waiver.
But in general, deportation liability with respect to a residence class visa holder can be suspended by the Minister of Immigration, a Delegated Decision Maker within INZ or the Immigration and Protection Tribunal subject to conditions which in criminal cases usually include that the person does not re-offend.
Where a conviction does occur, deportation liability can be reactivated. In such cases INZ officially notifies the individual of the possibility of re-activation and gives them the opportunity to present their case against deportation before a decision is made.
Pato’s lawyer Craig Tuck says that Pato received no fine or other punishment apart from reparation, following last week’s conviction.
Judge Emma Parsons ordered Pato to pay $1750 and $360 court costs.
“If INZ want to pursue this then he has a strong case for not being deported – many factors support him staying in NZ,” says Craig.
The charges relate to an incident in a Queenstown bar last August, where the 31-year-old went to assist his wife, who was trying to reject the attentions of a male patron.
Pato pushed the man away forcefully, got him in a headlock and pushed him down to a nearby couch got atop of him and grabbed him by the throat – a hold he held for about ten seconds.
Craig Tuck sought a discharge without conviction pleading the direct and indirect consequences of the conviction outweigh the gravity of the offending.
Pato Alvarez is one of the country’s biggest independent music promoters.
His reggae festival, One Love, held in Tauranga on Waitangi weekend, is New Zealand’s biggest music festival attracting about 40,000 people.