Jacinda Ardern wanted New Zealand terror attacker deported two months ago

NEW ZEALAND tried to deport the man who stabbed five people and injured two others in an ISIS-inspired lone wolf knife attack in Auckland more than three years ago due to his extremist views, it has emerged.

Jacinda Ardern

The PM expressed concerns over the attacker’s presence and status in the country in July (Image: Getty)

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The attacker, shot dead by police on Friday, was named as Sri Lankan refugee Ahamed Aathill Mohamed Samsudeen, 32, who arrived in New Zealand on a student visa in 2011 before claiming asylum.

On Saturday, his family released a lengthy statement saying he had suffered mental health problems for a decade, while sending “love and support” to New Zealand.

It said: “We hope to find out with you all, what happened in Aathil’s case and what we all could have done to prevent this. We are heartbroken by this terrible event.”

Police guarding crime scene area in New Zealand

Police around Countdown LynnMall in Auckland, guarding the area of the crime scene (Image: Getty)

Refugee status was granted due to fear of harm for his political beliefs if he returned to Sri Lanka in December 2013, after he appealed a refusal.

Police became concerned about his views and activities in 2016 and by May 2018, the Refugee Status Branch served Samsudeen notice of an intention to cancel this status, allowing his deportation, after he posted extreme videos and pictures online.

He appealed, preventing immediate deportation, but remained under surveillance while a number of terror-related prosecutions against him took place.

Despite concerns, he was bailed and under 24-hour monitoring when the attack in a Countdown supermarket in LynnMall took place.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she met with immigration officials just two months ago to express her concern that he was still in New Zealand.

Roy Walsh

Roy Walsh

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