Dutton wanted au pair visa within an hour, Senate inquiry told
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Dutton wanted au pair visa within an hour, Senate inquiry told

The office of then-immigration minister Peter Dutton demanded an au pair detained at Brisbane Airport be given "urgent" consideration for a visa - preferably within an hour.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

Emails provided to a Senate inquiry on Wednesday show Mr Dutton's then-office asked the department to prepare a ministerial intervention briefing for the woman, Italian au pair Michela Marchisio.

She was about to be deported that night after officers found she planned to work while on a tourist visa.

"This is urgent. The minister requires this submission tonight (preferably in the next hour as he has an appointment at 7.30pm)," the email from Mr Dutton's departmental liaison officer said.

It was sent at 6.30pm on June 17, 2015.

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The intervention briefing was prepared and the woman was given a visa and released from detention that night.

The emails also show a conversation between Ms Marchisio and someone in Australia offering to help her find babysitting work for a "bit of cash to fund fun".

Mr Dutton, now Home Affairs Minister, told Parliament he did not know the people for whom Ms Marchisio was planning to work.

It was later revealed her intended employer was an old Queensland Police colleague of Mr Dutton, Russell Keag, who emailed his office to say it had been a "long time between calls" but he needed help.

Mr Dutton said he had not spoken to Mr Keag in 20 years before he was approached for help with the visa.

The emails also show the department expressly disagreed with Mr Dutton's push to give a visa to another au pair detained in Adelaide in November 2015.

Mr Dutton pushed ahead with it anyway and his ministerial decision had to be backdated after he missed signing it in time.

AAP