A SPANISH man has been refused entry into Australia and fined $3300 for bringing in undeclared pork and cheese products.
Last October, the Albanese Government announced it would increase the infringement amounts for people caught with banned items, to stop diseases like Foot and Mpouth Disease and pests entering and establishing in Australia.
Since the increased infringements were introduced on January 1, a 20 year-old Spanish man has become the first person to have his visa cancelled and fined $3300 for carrying over a kilogram of undeclared raw pork meat and cheese in his luggage. Previously, a 12-penalty point infringement was $2664.
Officials stopped the man in Perth last Tuesday and discovered 275 grams of non-commercial pork pancetta, 665gms non-commercial of pork meat and about 300gms of goats’ cheese in his luggage that was not declared.
Travellers who have their visa cancelled are removed from Australia on the earliest available flight and can face an exclusion period of three years before they are able to reapply for a visa. It is not known what exclusion period has been applied to the Spanish man.
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Murray Watt, said the Spanish man’s case was a strong reminder that travellers will be caught and punished for breaking Australia’s tough biosecurity laws.
“I hope this man regrets his actions – his visit to Australia was over before it even began, and he’s been sent packing with a hefty fine.
“We are serious about keeping foot and mouth and other diseases out of the country, and travellers need to remember that when they’re trying to enter Australia,” Mr Watt said.
“This was a serious breach of Australia’s biosecurity laws and could put Australia’s agricultural industries at risk, as well as our environment and international trade reputation.
“I’d encourage all international passengers to think carefully about their passenger declarations, and if in doubt, just declare it.”
Find out more about your responsibilities when travelling to Australia.