The Australian government and its offshore detention contractors will pay more than $70m in compensation to nearly 2,000 refugees and asylum seekers for illegally detaining them in dangerous and damaging conditions on Manus Island.
The government on Wednesday settled a class action brought by Slater and Gordon on behalf of 1,905 refugees and asylum seekers detained on the island, rather than proceed with a six-month trial that would have involved evidence before the court from detainees of murder inside the detention centre, systemic sexual and physical abuse, and inadequate medical treatment leading to injury and death.
The detention centre was ruled “illegal and unconstitutional” by the PNG Supreme Court in April 2016. It remains operational, housing nearly 900 men, but is slated for closure in October this year.
Costs will run to at least $20m, Slater and Gordon said. But the total cost could climb beyond $100m, an immigration department source confirmed to The Guardian.
H/t reader kevin a.
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