11 Dec 2013

Boat race protester wins fight to stay in Britain

5:32 am on 11 December 2013

An Australian protester who jumped into the River Thames to disrupt last year's Oxbridge Boat Race has won an appeal against deportation after arguing that his British-Indian wife would face racism if the family moved back to Australia.

Trent Oldfield, 37, was sentenced to prison for six months after he swam into the path of rowing crews during the Race, in a protest against what he sees as the inequality of British society.

Oldfield, who served only six weeks of his sentence, faced deportation after Home Secretary Theresa May ruled he should be sent back to Australia.

But an immigration tribunal judge ruled on Monday that the decision was flawed.

In court, Oldfield described Australia as racist and argued that his wife would face persecution there.

He has lived in Britain since 2001 with his wife, a British citizen of Indian descent. The couple have a daughter.

Last year a survey by Monash University in Melbourne found that Indians were particularly singled out for racist abuse following a spate of attacks on foreign students.