(LAWFUEL) – Two Indonesian men who allegedly facilitated separate people smuggling ventures to Australia in April were charged today by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) with people smuggling offences.
Both men will be escorted by the AFP from Christmas Island to appear before the Perth Magistrates Court on Friday (24 April 2009).
The AFP will allege in court that one of the men, aged 32, crewed a vessel as part of an attempt to smuggle 59 passengers into Australia on 1 April 2009.
The vessel was intercepted by the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service ACV Vessel, Storm Bay, operating under the control of Border Protection Command, within close proximity to Ashmore Island.
The other man, aged 40, allegedly crewed a vessel as part of an attempt to smuggle 38 passengers into Australia on 6 April 2009. This vessel arrived at Christmas Island on 8 April 2009.
The two men were each charged with one count of facilitating the bringing of non-citizens into Australia (of 5 or more people) contrary to Section 232A of the Migration Act 1958.
The maximum penalty for this offence is 20 years imprisonment or a $220,000 fine.