The Czech drug smuggler at the centre of a political storm after being granted residency by the Immigration Minister, featured on the New Zealand Weddings website offering tips on choosing a suit, before the kickboxer was jailed two years ago for importing ecstasy.
Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway this afternoon ordered an investigation into the case of Karel Sroubek after revelations he returned to Europe in 2009, despite claiming he'd be in danger if he was deported to the Czech Republic following his jail term in New Zealand.
In 2009 the High Court in Auckland gave Sroubek permission to travel to the Czech Republic, ahead of an impending court case.
The 2009 application was specifically for Sroubek, under the false name of Jan Antolik, to travel to the Czech Republic for business, and was granted. It was confirmed he did return to Europe, although it was not clear if he visited the Czech Republic.
This afternoon, an interview Sroubek gave to New Zealand Weddings, for its online publication of January 15, 2015, has come to light.
"We talk to groom Jan Antolik," the piece began, stating he was the "winner of a Fashion Week experience with New Zealand Weddings" and a top suit-making firm.
Sroubek was quoted talking about the process he went through with the suit-makers to have a bespoke suit made, that he "eventually opted for a navy suit made from Italian wool" and "chose copper buttons, because I really wanted to add a point of difference to the finished look".
The National Party has been questioning the decision of Mr Lees-Galloway to let Sroubek stay as a New Zealand resident, and therefore avoid deportation.
Mr Lees-Galloway said yesterday he was seeking urgent advice in light of the new information, and confirmed today he had asked Immigration New Zealand to urgently investigate the allegations to determine their veracity.
"As a decision maker, I cannot rely on innuendo or hearsay or speculation, but these allegations certainly are concerning to me."
He declined to go into any detail about the new information "for legal reasons".
In a tense showdown in Parliament this afternoon, Mr Lees-Galloway repeatedly refused to answer questions about the case from the National Party.
National MP Michael Woodhouse asked whether Sroubek or his lawyer expressed any concerns for his safety if he was returned to the Czech republic.
"I am not making any further comment on what information I used to make that decision," Mr Lees-Galloway told MPs.
Mr Woodhouse asked whether the Minister was aware that the Czech national had twice visited the the Czech republic while awaiting trial on kidnapping and aggravated robbery charges.
Mr Lees-Galloway again declined to answer, saying it was "not in the public interest" to do so.
The parole board had considered Mr Sroubek unsafe to release back into the community just 48 hours before he was granted residency.