Mr Universe fails in appeal against deportation | St George & Sutherland Shire Leader

Bodybuilding champion Gary Lewer will be expelled from Australia after a court offer to overturn his pending deportation was rejected.

The former Mr Universe will be returned to the UK two years after Home Secretary Peter Dutton called for his deportation for character reasons.

Mr Lewer, 66, acknowledged that he had a significant criminal record, including a conviction and prison sentence for gun possession more than 25 years ago.

He was also convicted in 2004 of selling steroids, which was included in a police file that was part of Mr Dutton’s decision.

Mr Lewer claimed there had been no substantial change in his character since he was last granted a visa in 2017, but police said they believe he is involved in a sophisticated criminal enterprise for drug importation and production.

He has never been convicted.

The Victoria Police Department claimed that he has “a solid knowledge of police investigative methodology, is extremely disciplined in his criminal behavior to avoid detection and is therefore an extremely difficult suspect to investigate”.

Lewer said their suspicion or belief was not evidence to support Dutton’s assessment of him.

But Federal Court Judge Bernard Murphy rejected the argument and upheld Lewer’s visa withdrawal.

Mr Lewer, a three-time world champion bodybuilder, left Britain at the age of five and never took up Australian citizenship.

Friends have previously described the deportation calls as “unjust” and “a result of a prolonged vendetta” by Victoria Police.

Mr Lewer is being held in immigration detention in Melbourne.

Australian Associated Press

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