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Reparation defaulter first airport intercept

2 October 2006

Reparation defaulter first airport intercept

The first intercept under the Collection of Fines at Airports initiative occurred this afternoon at the Auckland International Airport, Courts Minister Rick Barker announced today.

"The person intercepted owed $3750 of reparation for an offence in 1986 and had made no payments since late 1987", said Rick Barker.

"Once intercepted, the individual was given the option to pay the full amount owing. He did and was subsequently allowed to travel.

"I've said all along that if you have enough money to travel overseas you have enough money to pay your reparation and fines. This person obviously had the money, and it's only right he was made to pay what he owed.

"This person stood up in a court and said he was going to pay the victim of his crime reparation. He didn't follow this promise and while he's been able to avoid the bailiff for the last 19 years, he couldn't escape the border agency.

"Legislation passed earlier this year allows us to stop people travelling internationally if they have a warrant for arrest and owe reparation of any amount or have more than $5000 in fines to pay.

"Since commencing full operation on 28 September, the Pay or Stay initiative has netted more than $10,000 from travelers who are sorting out unpaid fines or reparation before they embark on international travel.

"To avoid being stopped at the airport the best thing to do is simply to ensure you have no major unpaid fines or reparation before you pack your bags", said Rick Barker.

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