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Malaysian died fleeing SA immigration bust

AAP logoAAP 1/08/2016 By Marnie Banger

Nobody is to blame for the death of a Malaysian man who suffered a heart attack while fleeing an immigration bust at a fruit-picking business, a coroner has found.

Hock An Ong overstayed his Australian visa by more than five years, and fell to the ground with breathing difficulties while running from a property in South Australia's Riverland region when authorities arrived in July 2013.

A police officer spotted the struggling 58-year-old, who died before an ambulance arrived.

An inquest into his death revealed Mr Ong entered Australia on a three-month visa in 2008 to visit his son who was studying in Melbourne.

Ngee Ong, had dropped his father off at Melbourne Airport in July 2008 for a flight home, and didn't realise his father hadn't returned to Malaysia until he flew there himself the following year.

While overstaying his visa, Mr Ong was able to register a vehicle, open bank accounts, send money overseas, use some medical services and find paid work - including the fruit picking job at Amaroo Orchards in Paringa where he died.

In his findings on Monday, South Australian deputy coroner Anthony Schapel said Mr Ong's death from ischaemic heart disease was in keeping with his reported medical history of hypertension and diabetes, and that nobody was to blame.

"The cold reality is that if Mr Ong neglected his health because he believed that this was the one issue that might trigger his detection as an overstayer, the situation was of his own making," the coroner said.

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