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Visa ordeal upsets gay Thai couples marrying in NZ

The first two Thai couples to book same-sex marriages in New Zealand have had to battle to get visitor permits from immigration officials who appear to have been suspicious about their 30-year age gaps.

Avatar of Alessia Valenza

6th September 2013 05:09

Alessia Valenza | ILGA Oceania

Kai Kingsley (left), who will marry Jakthon Phaengtho, was astounded at the "grilling" they received after applying for their visas. The two couples – both young Thai men marrying much older Americans – were initially refused visas because officials did not believe they had "genuine intentions" to marry here.

They had to produce "reams of information" including bank accounts, property records, photographic proof of their relationship and support letters before they finally obtained visas.

After they complained to the Herald, Immigration NZ apologised to them this week for giving them visas stating "for the express purpose of registering same-sex marriage."

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