It’s one of the biggest issues in the election campaign. While Australia spends millions of dollars to stop the flow of asylum seeker boats, its efforts are constantly undermined by criminals and corrupt military and government officials. These operators have worked in secret… until now. Four Corners has caught them on camera.
Most asylum seekers are terrified to take on the people smugglers. Reporter Sarah Ferguson meets one who is not. This asylum seeker is determined to expose the people smugglers who use refugees as “commodities”. In a series of hidden camera stings, the smugglers and their accomplices are filmed talking about boats, bribes and Australian border security.
Australia’s attempts to stop the boats includes funding Indonesia’s immigration detention centres but, as Four Corners reveals, that policy is being undermined by corruption at senior levels in the Indonesian Immigration Department. In an investigation carried out over months, Four Corners has made the connection between the immigration racket, the smugglers and the military who protect the smugglers’ boats on their way to Australia.
It’s a confronting picture for the Australian Government dealing with the politically explosive issue of the boats. How effective are Australia’s border protection polices, in the face of endemic corruption in Indonesia?