An extremist pastor who harassed people at two Brisbane mosques looks set to be deported after being arrested overnight.
Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said the New Zealand national was taken into custody on Friday evening and has been placed in immigration detention.
“My message is clear – if people come to this country they need to abide by the conditions of their visas,” Mr Dutton told reporters on Saturday
“We have a wonderful tradition in our country of freedom of speech, but we’re not going to tolerate people going to a place of worship and harassing others.”
It follows three men, including 31-year self-styled pastor Logan Robertson, being charged with public nuisance and trespass at the Kuraby Mosque and the Darra Mosque.
The church is not affiliated with the Queensland Baptists or Australian Baptist Ministries.
Mr Dutton said Robertson was specifically counselled by immigration authorities when he moved to Australia about his history of extremist rhetoric.
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The minister said a full investigation by Queensland Police would be carried out before a final decision about Robertson’s deportation.
It comes as The Islamic Council of Queensland fears copycat incidents at mosques after the incidents.
Council spokesperson Ali Kadri says stronger laws around hate speech are needed to better protect worshippers of all faiths.
“This is not just about Muslims, it’s about hate, it’s about preaching hatred, it’s about dividing society, and if we don’t nip it in the bud it will affect society as a whole,” he said.
Mr Kadri said he would write to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk about the issue.