Parole granted, then revoked for Tinder rapist after “miscommunication”, could travel unescorted out of New Zealand

Fernando Do Nascimento Barbosa has been jailed for violating his date with Tinder. He will soon be released on parole pending deportation. Photo / Supplied

A man jailed for violating his date with Tinder was to be released from prison on parole this weekend and deported to Brazil within hours.

But he will now remain in jail after “miscommunication” led the parole board to mistakenly believe he could board an unescorted flight.

In December, Brazilian national Fernando Do Nascimento Barbosa was sentenced to three years and four months in prison for violating his date with Tinder in Christchurch in 2018.

He claimed he did not realize that his repeated cries of “no” and that trying to push him away during the assault was a signal for him to stop.

When Barbosa was convicted, a deportation order was made, meaning he had to leave the country as soon as possible upon his release from prison – either on parole or after serving his full sentence, at the end of 2022. .

The Parole Board had refused to release him earlier, saying he still posed an undue risk to the community given his lack of remorse – but indicated she could let him out if his deportation could take place or whether he would voluntarily leave New Zealand.

When an offender is deported from New Zealand, he is accompanied by a police officer on the first available flight after release from prison.

Due to Covid-19 travel restrictions, police are unable to escort criminals on deportation orders.

A deportee can also leave voluntarily if an airline allows them to fly unescorted.

At the end of last month, the board learned that the return trip to Brazil had been booked for Barbosa for this Sunday.

His family had paid for the flights – from Christchurch to Auckland, then to South America – and the board heard it had been confirmed that he could travel without an escort.

Barbosa will be strictly watched until his flight leaves for Brazil, and he will never be able to return to New Zealand.  Stock photo / 123RF
Barbosa will be strictly watched until his flight leaves for Brazil, and he will never be able to return to New Zealand. Stock photo / 123RF

His victim – who was afraid he would be released into the community and meet him – was notified and plans were in place.

However, his parole was revoked days later after it emerged Emirates would not be taking him unescorted.

“Unfortunately, it appears that the advice that he could fly unescorted on an Emirates flight was incorrect,” said Martha Coleman, chair of the parole board.

“He is not able to do it.”

Coleman said the “miscommunication” with the board about the theft was “inadvertent.”

A spokesperson for the Parole Board said the organization was relying on advice from the corrections service.

“What, in this case, was that Mr. Do Nascimento Barbosa could fly without an escort,” she said.

Barbosa will now remain behind bars until at least the end of the month and is expected to return to the parole board on August 19 to review his situation.

He has already proposed to the commission that he be paroled at an address in Canterbury until he can return to Brazil.

But counsel said the address was inappropriate because it was too close to where the victim and his family lived, worked and dated.

Coleman said Barbosa was “understandably upset” when he learned that his parole had been revoked and that he would not be flying on Sunday.

“However, however… we are informed that he blames the victim for his situation,” she said.

“The only person responsible for his situation is himself.

“He must be aware that his attitude may in turn lead a future board to rethink his preparation for parole.”

When her release was approved for that weekend, it came with strict conditions.

The council said that once he left prison on Sunday, if any of his flights were canceled or delayed for any reason, he should contact his probation officer immediately and then report directly to an approved address. in Canterbury where he would be immediately equipped with a GPS. watch bracelet.

“His victim doesn’t want to come into contact with him. Knowing that conditions are being watched gives him confidence,” Coleman said in a previous parole decision.

Barbosa met a woman on Tinder shortly after arriving in Christchurch.  He raped her on a date and was jailed.  Photo / 123RF
Barbosa met a woman on Tinder shortly after arriving in Christchurch. He raped her on a date and was jailed. Photo / 123RF

“It’s understandable, she is still very touched by her offense.

“Under the Parole Act 2002, we are required to give due consideration to the views of the victim. She does not want her to be released in a region where she lives or goes for family or professional reasons.

“The conditions reflect that.”

Coleman said that while the address was approved in case Barbosa did not catch his flight, the board said it was not suitable as a long-term parole address.

“This commission would not have released Mr. Barbosa at the ordinary address,” Coleman said in a previous parole decision.

During the sentencing the court heard that Barbosa had no remorse and even after pleading guilty he tried to justify the attack.

He told the Parole Board that the rape took place two months after arriving in New Zealand and that “he did not understand New Zealand culture and misinterpreted the signals.”

Moreover, he said, in Brazil “his behavior would mean something different”.


If this is an emergency and you think you or someone else is in danger, call 111.

If you’ve been a victim of assault or sexual abuse in the past and need to talk to someone, contact the Safe to Talk confidential hotline at:

• Text 4334 and they’ll get back to you.

• Send an email to [email protected]

• Visit for an online chat

You can also contact your local police station – click here for a listing.

If you have been abused, remember that it is not your fault.

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