Snoop Dogg may be prevented from touring Australia with Ice Cube in October, it has emerged.

The rapper, real name Calvin Broadus Jr, received clearance this week for the dual headlining tour, just a year after he was refused permission for a visa application to host the MTV Australia Video Music awards.

But following a spate of public complaints about his criminal record, immigration officials may reconsider their decision.

"As a result of public concern and interest, the department has decided that in fact we will be undertaking a more thorough assessment of Mr Broadus' character," a senior immigration official told the Reuters news agency.

Snoop was sentenced to five years of probation relating to gun and drug charges in April 2007 and was denied entry to Australia later that month, after the country's Department of Immigration and Citizenship cited concerns regarding his previous criminal convictions.

He was also cautioned for affray at London's Heathrow airport in April 2006, when Snoop and his entourage vandalised a duty-free store by throwing whisky bottles after some members of the group had been denied entry to the British Airways first class lounge as they were flying in economy class.

However, the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship this week decided to lift a ban imposed on the 17 million-selling rapper by the country's previous conservative administration.

In response to the decision - which follows a pattern of softened immigration laws under prime minister Kevin Rudd's Labour administration - family groups have pointed to the rapper's rap sheet of drug and firearms charges, as well as an acquittal for murder.

"Snoop Dogg trades in toxic messages of menace, violence, misogyny and lawlessness," Angela Conway, of the Australian Family Association, told the Herald Sun newspaper.

Immigration officials have now begun a new assessment of Snoop's criminal record, the spokesperson confirmed.

"We've advised his tour promoter and he and Mr Broadus will have an opportunity to respond. We clearly will look at his criminal history," he added.

26/08/2008 18:34:21