British couple to be deported from New Zealand because of brain tumour
A British family are to be deported from New Zealand after the father was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
The Daily Telegraph reports that Paul and Sarah Crystal and their three children, aged 7, 15 and 17, moved to New Zealand over six years ago but their application for permanent residency was turned down because the government was concerned about his inability to work and the costs for his treatment.
Mr Crystal, from Evesham, was given a 20 per cent chance of surviving the next three years and said the family was now 'stuck' between Britain and New Zealand. He said they cannot afford air travel back to Britain but cannot stay in New Zealand without access to welfare benefits.
Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, he said: 'I don't know how we'll get by. I just have to get the family safe. I have to get them somewhere where they have a future and get them settled To come out and realise you're left struggling on the other side of the world with nothing is a shock.'
Mr Crystal, 49, drove petrol tankers in Britain for 20 years and moved to New Zealand with his family in 2006 to work for Caltex. He ran a painting business and installed amusement machines from 2009 but was forced to stop working in 2010 after the removal of a brain tumour.
At the time, he was preparing the family's application for residency but was informed two months ago that this had been rejected.
The family, who live outside Auckland, now face deportation when their visas expire on 16 December.
Mrs Crystal, 43, said the application rejection had been 'devastating' for their three children.
She said: 'We haven't got anywhere to go. To take the kids out of New Zealand would be a wrench for them all. I don't know where we'll live – probably the Evesham area. We would go back with nothing It is extremely stressful. It is stressful on my husband – he thinks it is all his fault because it happened to him.'
The immigration department of New Zealand told the Daily Telegraph that it had examined Mr Crystal's residency application and considered other visa categories but he failed to meet the relevant criteria.
The family is appealing the government's decision and Mr Crystal says he has received advice from doctors that the cost of his treatment would not be high.
Meanwhile, the family has received thousands of dollars in donations, as well as food and grocery vouchers from the local community.
The immigration department said the couple could apply for temporary visas or seek support from their family abroad. A spokesman said: 'If Mr Crystal, his wife and three children wish to continue staying in New Zealand they should apply for further visas in good time.
'We note that both Mr and Mrs Crystal have immediate family living outside New Zealand. As British citizens it would be appropriate for the family to approach the British High Commission for any support they require.'
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