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Thread: BRITS booted out!

  1. #1
    macfod's Avatar
    macfod is offline Oh Masterful One
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    Default BRITS booted out!

    Immigrants get the boot after spending $1m on dream
    By TONY WALL - Sunday Star Times | Sunday, 15 June 2008

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    PHIL DOYLE/Sunday Star-Times
    DREAMS DASHED: Roger and Alison Schenn say they will continue their battle for New Zealand residency from Britain.

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    AdvertisementA British couple who came to New Zealand to live their dream of running a farm are being booted out of the country after a nightmare experience with an "incompetent" Immigration Service.


    Roger and Alison Schenn estimate they have spent about $1 million upgrading a formerly dilapidated farm near Wellsford, north of Auckland, but immigration officials say the business is of no benefit to New Zealand and have refused to grant them permanent residency.

    The couple, from Norfolk, have until Thursday to leave the country and will fly out that day. They have exhausted all avenues, having appealed to the Residence Review Board and made four requests for ministerial intervention. They contacted the Sunday Star-Times after reading of cases where residency was granted when officials pulled strings, including for the Kiribati family of former Immigration boss Mary Anne Thompson.

    "We didn't know anybody who could pull some strings - that's the difference," Roger Schenn, 54, said.

    The Schenns received Overseas Investment Commission approval to buy the farm in 2002 and bought it for $560,000 in 2003. At the time, Immigration New Zealand (INZ) granted them long-term business visas. It was an exception to policy as they did not have experience in farming, but the visas were granted on the basis they would be "rejuvenating a poorly performing New Zealand business".

    The couple set about doing just that, transforming a struggling farm with only 30 cattle to a successful operation with more than 100 beef stock, plus 60 heifers. They have had the farm valued at over $2m.

    They say they made a large capital investment, removing gorse and weed, doing pest control, installing a water supply and adding fertiliser to increase stock numbers. They employed local contractors for haymaking, fertiliser spreading and mechanical work.

    In November 2005 the couple applied for residency under the entrepreneur category, but INZ was "not satisfied that the couple's farming business met the . . . policy with respect to the criteria that the business be of benefit to New Zealand. It was also unclear whether or not Mr Schenn had actually been running the business for at least two years".

    Alison Schenn, 51, said the officer who dealt with their case seemed confused about the dates they had been on the farm. They had returned to England for a time when her mother died, but had been on the farm continuously for two years when they applied for residency.

    She said the officials seemed incompetent, as they all gave different advice. The couple did not use an immigration consultant as they did not want to have to pay thousands of dollars in fees.

    "If I had my time again I'd use one. If we had, we would have got in," Roger Schenn said.

    His wife said: "We love New Zealand, everyone has been so supportive, but there is something not right, it all needs looking at."

    The couple have transferred the farm to Roger's brother, who has lived in New Zealand for 25 years, and have vowed to fight on once they get back to Britain.

    An INZ spokesperson said there was no guarantee of permanent residency given when the couple entered the country and this was made clear in a letter sent to them when their visas were approved

  2. #2
    macfod's Avatar
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    Exclamation Interesting !

    mmm!

    I dont know the full story, but it doesnt all stack up to me!

  3. #3
    MotherBear's Avatar
    MotherBear is offline The missing link
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    Beat ya to it, Mark. I posted the same article down in What's in the news under the title 'A cautionary tale' .

    As you say, it sounds a bit harsh unless there's more to it than we know.
    Mother Bear

    Try to bloom wherever you are planted.

  4. #4
    macfod's Avatar
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    Default always MB your no 1..

    well, I reckon without knowing the full facts its hard to judge.
    But, I reckon I am behind Immigration on this with a few questions...
    How long did they leave NZ for to go back the UK?
    Did they ever employ anyone apart from contractors?
    Have they paid any taxes?

    And you get a 3year permit to stay here on a LTBV , so thats exhausted in just 3 days time..so this is their last chance to stay here by slagging of Immigration to the press.
    The fact they mention Immigration advisors that could have helped them shows naivity and not really knowing the systems!

    It looks like they were lucky to get a LTBV granted in the first instance as from where sit it looks more like a property purchase to stay here and they made money from selling the farm.

    I will list a separate note on our history on this later away from this article.
    With our own views on the process..

  5. #5
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    I agree that there appears to be more to this than meets the eye. I see that these people originate from Norfolk. The medical authorities there have an expression. NFN. Normal For Norfolk. It's used (in a professional sense) to describe people who are, perhaps, slightly slower than the rest of us. You know the sort. People who originate from small villages where everyone is related. From what I've read, I think it might apply in this instance.

    Gimme six!

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    KP - you're evil, EVIL I tell you.
    Taffy

    The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.

  7. #7
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    I heard the lady on Radio NZ National this morning. My earlier prognosis was right and I apologise for nothing.

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