The applicant, a female former refugee claimant from Eritrea, made a pre-removal-risk-assessment application on the basis that she was a member of the Eritrean Liberation Front and a member of an unregistered church, and as such would be at risk if returned to Eritrea. Both grounds had previously been advanced and rejected. She also made a third, new argument, that she would be at risk as a returned refugee claimant.
The Officer rejected the evidence that the applicant was a member of an unregistered church, despite evidence submitted by the applicant:
 In the present circumstances and reading the decision as a whole, the Officer’s decision could only stand if the Applicant’s evidence of membership was not believed. There was more than sufficient evidence as to the risk to members of unregistered churches and there was sufficient evidence, if believed, to establish the Applicant’s membership in that type of church.
 Therefore, the Officer, having decided the issue on credibility, failed to consider whether a hearing should be held. The Applicant is not entitled per se to a hearing but the Minister is required to consider whether to have a hearing. In that respect there was an error of law because the Officer never turned her mind to that issue. …
The Officer also failed to properly consider the ground of being a returned refugee claimant, which was not raised before the RPD.
Date decided: August 4, 2010
Counsel: Micheal Crane (applicant), Daniel Engel (Minister)