Mike Tyson gets Australian visa after New Zealand rejects him
US Boxer and former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world Mike Tyson poses for photographers in front of the famous Piccadilly Circus after launching a new clothing range at Lillywhite's store in Piccadilly Circus in London on October 6, 2012. / JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/GettyImages
WELLINGTON, New Zealand Australia granted Mike Tyson a visa Wednesday, one week after New Zealand barred the former heavyweight boxing champion from entering that country due to his 1992 rape conviction.
Officials carefully weighed the pros and cons of his visit and of his character given his criminal past before making the decision, said Cian Manton, a spokeswoman for Australia's Department of Immigration and Citizenship.
She said it was the first time Tyson had applied for a visa to Australia and he was warned the privilege could be revoked if he broke any laws.
"Given the purpose of his visit and the short duration, we considered the risk of him reoffending to be very low," Manton said.
The entertainment visa he was granted covers the duration of Tyson's five-city Australian tour starting next month.
He was scheduled to visit both countries on the "Day of the Champions" tour to give inspirational talks about overcoming adversity in his life. New Zealand immigration authorities initially granted him a visa before a charity withdrew its support and officials reversed their decision.
Tyson served three years in prison for rape.
Tyson says being denied access to New Zealand is "one of those things in life that happens - it's life on life's terms and everyone has to deal with that and those uncertainties."
In an August interview with "CBS This Morning," former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson opened up about his life as expressed in his Spike Lee-directed one-man Broadway show, "Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth."
Lee on Mike Tyson: He talks about his triumphs and his stumbles
Tyson was heavily critical of actress and model - and former Mrs. Tyson - Robin Givens, in the show. When asked about how he feels about the way she is portrayed, Tyson said, "It's nothing personal. It's just me telling my life and my life from my perspective. She's told her story from her perspective. She went to all these great schools. It's not like she went to some welfare community center in the hood saying, 'Mike Tyson did this.' She went to the all up-and-coming erudites (sic) of society. These are our future leaders and talking about when I walk down the street, 'Oh, my gosh, that dreadful person right there.' This is not good stuff. Man, she did symposiums, going to colleges across the country."
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