White Ribbon Day Nov 25th 2014. What are you doing to stop the violence?

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NOV25

EVENTS CAN BE FOUND HERE http://www.whiteribbon.org.au/events

White Ribbon is Australia’s only national, male led Campaign to end men’s violence against women.

Vision
All women live in safety free from all forms of men’s violence.

Mission
Making women’s safety a man’s issue too.

The campaign works through primary prevention initiatives involving awareness raising and education, and programs with youth, schools, workplaces and across the broader community.

Globally, White Ribbon is the world’s largest male-led movement to end men’s violence against women. Originating in Canada in 1991, White Ribbon is now active in more than 60 countries.

White Ribbon began in Australia in 2003 as part of UNIFEM (now UN Women), formally becoming a Foundation in 2007.

White Ribbon Australia observes the International Day of the Elimination of Violence against Women, also known as White Ribbon Day, annually on November 25. White Ribbon Day signals the start of the 16 Days of Activism to Stop Violence against Women, which ends on Human Rights Day (December 10).

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Newborn baby dumped down drain in Quakers Hill , 30-year-old mother charged with attempted Murder

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What a sad but also appalling situation, for a mother (or father or both) to dump a baby physically down the drain, allegedly dropping the tot 2.4 metres. Thank god for a real hero and the babies guardian angel in cyclist family David Otte and his daughter Hayley who were riding past and heard the cries.

It is disgusting, but I understand the bleeding hearts who will rush to the mothers defence. This is bullshit.Take or leave the baby in hospital when it was born.


 

update 24/11/2014

Mother of baby boy abandoned in drain near Sydney’s M7 charged with attempted murder

Mon 24 Nov 2014, 7:01am

A 30-year-old woman has been charged with the attempted murder of her newborn baby boy, who was found in a drain in Sydney’s west.

Cyclists heard the baby crying from the bottom of a two-and-a-half-metre drain near the M7 motorway at Quakers Hill on Sunday morning.

Police conducted an extensive search to find the baby’s mother, including hospital record checks and doorknocks.

On Sunday afternoon a 30-year-old woman from Quakers Hill was arrested after attending Blacktown police station.

She has been charged with attempted murder and will face Blacktown local court today.

It is believed the baby was born on Monday and police will allege he was placed in the drain the following day.

The baby was taken to Westmead Children’s Hospital where he remains in a stable condition.

The woman has been refused bail and has been remanded in custody.

Baby sounded like a ‘kitten screaming’

David Otte and his daughter Hayley said they were riding along the M7′s cycleway when they thought they heard a kitten screaming.

“No-one in their right mind would ever come across something like this,” Mr Otte said.

They could hear the baby’s cries from a small opening in the drain but were unable to lift the lid.

“We couldn’t get it off. We couldn’t get it off, we had to wait to help the police,” he said.

“Luckily we were there, right place right time. There was someone looking over us and told us to stop and have a look.

“At the end of the day we need to find what the truth is behind it and really find out if we can help the little fella.”

Both he and his daughter were deeply shaken and thought at one point the baby had died.

“All I wanted was for this baby to be safe so I’m glad that we got there and saved him,” Hayley Otte said.

Newborn would not have survived hot day

As Sydney’s west sweltered in 40 degree plus heat on Sunday, the chances of the baby surviving if he was not found were slim, police said.

Inspector David Lagats said finding the baby inside a drain was horrific.

“It was already undernourished and dehydration would have taken effect,” he said.

“The baby was conscious and breathing.

“He was removed from the drain and placed in the care of police.

“Ambulance were called and he’s been taken to the Westmead Children’s Hospital.”

ASHLEE MULLANY AND AAP
The Daily Telegraph
November 23, 2014 4:25PM

Newborn found in drain beside Sydney's M7
 This newborn baby boy was found down a drain at Quakers Hill this morning. Picture: NSW Police

THE mother of a baby found in a drain at Quakers Hill this morning has now been identified by police.

There are fears the newborn baby boy may have suffered internal injuries after being dropped down a 2.4m-deep drain near the M7 Motorway.

The dad and daughter who found the baby visited the Children’s Hospital at Westmead this afternoon to deliver a package of baby clothes.

David Otte and his daughter Hayley, as well as her mum Michelle, dropped off three sets of baby clothes, a new baby blanket and a face washer and towel.

“We wanted to see him, but the hospital said we weren’t able to at the moment,” Mr Otte said outside of hospital.

“We’d all really love a chance to see him again. Today has been such an emotional experience for everyone.”

Mrs Otte said the family was moved to give the little boy the gifts because “he really doesn’t have anything”.

“We have family, we have each other. He didn’t have anything.”

As a result of hospital record checks and doorknocks, the mother has been identified as a 20-year-old Quakers Hill woman.

She is currently assisting police with inquiries at Blacktown Police Station.

Mr Otte was cycling along the path with his 18-year-old daughter this morning when he heard the baby screaming.

“We were going on a leisurely ride, my daughter and I, and came across a noise that we could hear,” Mr Otte said.

“We actually thought it was a kitten and when we went down there we could hear exactly what it was, you could definitely tell it was a baby screaming.”

Mr Otte said he cycles on the path once a month and was about to turn around and head home when he heard the baby’s cries.

“Luckily we were there, someone was looking over us and told us to stop and have a look,” he said.

Cyclist David Otte and daughter Hayley found a baby boy whilst riding along a bike track

Cyclist David Otte and daughter Hayley found a baby boy whilst riding along a bike track beside the M7. Picture: Cameron Richardson bloody heroes!

Inspector David Lagats, from Quakers Hill police, said the boy was malnourished and undergoing medical tests at Westmead Children’s Hospital.

“He’s said to be in a serious but stable condition. The hospital estimates the baby to be two to three days old,” Insp Lagats said.

“He was already malnourished and dehydration would have taken effect so I would have had grave fears for the child’s welfare had it been exposed to this weather for the rest of the day.

“The umbilical cord had been cut and had been clamped. It appears to have had some medical intervention since its birth.”

Of concern is the height that the baby may have fallen from, Quakers Hill duty officer Inspector David Lagats said.

There was a gap between the ground and the concrete slab, big enough to put the child through, and police believe he dropped 2.4m.

Inside the drain you get a clearer indication of the 2.4m drop the child enduredafter bei

Inside the drain you get a clearer indication of the 2.4m drop the child endured after being dumped beside the M7. Picture Cameron Richardson

Patrick Morgan, Mark McAllister and Darren McIntyre were the first police officers on the

Westlink M7 staff use a crane to put the cover back onto the drain after it was removed earlier to save the baby. Picture: Cameron Richardson

The child is thought to be of Indian or Middle Eastern appearance.

Some of the cyclists who found him saw an Indian male in an orange shirt walking on the cycle track moments after they heard the baby’s cries.

Senior-Constable Mark McAlister was among the first on the scene and climbed into the drain with another detective to pull the distressed baby out.

“When I arrived there were several bike riders, cyclists and pedestrians standing around the drain. Myself and several other police have come up, we heard something coming from the drain,” Sen-Constable McAlister said.

Patrick Morgan, Mark McAllister and Darren McIntyre were the first police officers on the

Patrick Morgan, Mark McAllister and Darren McIntyre were the first police officers on the scene. Picture: Cameron Richardson

BUBS THAT WENT BEFORE…

August 2012: Six-week-old baby dumped on Joseph St, Lidcombe. Parents found arguing at Lidcombe station and child removed from family.

March 2013: Baby Ahn, abandoned hours after being born at Canterbury Hospital. 30-year-old Korean mother left him at the hospital.

April 2014: Baby “Mai”, 18-month-old left on the doorstep of a Western Sydney home. Mother was taken to immigration detention but released on a bridging visa.

“At least six of us have then lifted up the concrete drain lid, when we’ve opened it we’ve sighted the small baby wrapped up in a hospital blanket. He appeared very young.

“How could someone do it? I, myself, have kids and we’re expecting a baby in a few more months so it’s not good that someone’s going through this and has done this to a little one.

“It was a bit surreal really. It’s great that someone actually stopped and heard it and had the initiative to give us a call.”

A photo of the baby boy in Sen-Constable McAlister’s arms has been widely circulated on social media this morning as police attempt to find the baby’s parents.

Lisa Charet, district director from the Department of Families and Community Services, said it was likely the child would be released from hospital into the care of the state.

“At this stage we are really worried about his welfare and mum’s. We can give her the help and support that she needs. She must be feeling enormously distressed,” Ms Charet said.

The child’s cry was heard coming from beneath the concrete slab to the right. Picture: Ca

The child’s cry was heard coming from beneath the concrete slab to the right. Picture: Cameron Richardson

“When this sort of thing happens, people are in a place of desperation.”

With temperatures tipped to peak above 40C in Western Sydney today there were concerns the child would have died if he had been found later in the day.

ICAC: Former NSW minister Ian Macdonald to be prosecuted over Doyles Creek mine licence

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Wipe that bloody smile off your face McDonald, there will be no happy meals in jail when they finish with you (well apart from the I’m dying, have 34 cancers, amnesia and dementia and so on, which will be a disgraceful defence to those that suffer from those diseases

Long time waiting for this, with more crooks to come, including the outrageously corrupt and greedy Obeid Tribe

Update Thu 20 Nov 2014, 4:57pm

ICAC: Former NSW ministers Eddie Obeid and Ian Macdonald to be prosecuted after corruption findings

Former New South Wales Labor ministers Eddie Obeid and Ian Macdonald have been ordered to appear in court after prosecutors decided to act on the findings of the state’s corruption watchdog.

Mr Obeid is being prosecuted for alleged misconduct in public office relating to restaurant leases at Circular Quay in Sydney.

Mr Macdonald is being prosecuted for two alleged offences of misconduct in public office over the awarding of a mining licence.

In June, Mr Obeid was found to have acted corruptly by the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), which said he “misused his position as an MP” to lobby ministers and a senior public servant over the retail leases.

The commission heard Mr Obeid had a secret stake in cafes and restaurants in the area through his brother-in-law, and he failed to disclose the stake when he lobbied other Labor ministers not to put the leases to a competitive tender when they expired in 2005.

“A court attendance notice was served on Mr Obeid this afternoon, following advice received from the NSW Director of Public Prosecutions,” ICAC said in a statement.

The court notice alleged Mr Obeid induced Stephen Dunn, a senior manager with the Maritime Authority of NSW, to “deal favourably” with Circular Quay Restaurants’ tenancies.

Mr Obeid fronted the media assembled outside his Hunters Hill home and said he would plead not guilty to the charges laid against him. Fraud from day 1, and the were ALL scared of him if you did not go past EO you got nothing back in the day in NSW parliment. Barely made a speech ever it at all, but was a POWER BROKER…WTF with the gutless party tribe (robbo)

“Those inquiries are nothing but sham inquiries that wanted to make ICAC look good,” he said.

He maintained his innocence and said he welcomed the prosecution.

“I have no concern whatsoever that in a court of law we’ll be able to fight the evidence, and I’m very confident,” Eddie Obeid said.

“I’m looking forward to telling the evidence we have. I’m innocent in every instance.”

ICAC’s Operation Acacia investigated Mr Macdonald’s decision to award the Doyles Creek mining licence in 2008, when he was resources minister.

The commission heard the then-Labor minister “gifted” the licence, in the Hunter Valley, to then-chairman of Doyles Creek Mining John Maitland without a competitive tender and against departmental advice.

The corruption watchdog recommended both Mr Macdonald and Mr Maitland be charged.

ICAC said a court attendance notice had been served on Mr Macdonald earlier today, after the DPP provided advice that Mr Macdonald should be prosecuted for two offences of misconduct in public office.

Mr Maitland was being prosecuted for being an accessory to misconduct in public office, ICAC said.

The action follows widespread criticism of a lack of prosecutions resulting from the commission’s corruption findings.

NSW Premier Mike Baird said it was “about time” Mr Macdonald was prosecuted.

“Ultimately, what you need to see is prosecutions,” he said.

“Those prosecutions coming forward is going to give great confidence to the community.

“That is exactly what they want to see – if someone does the wrong thing and if they abuse public office, if they act in their own interest, if they undertake corrupt activity, well, there are consequences and they need to face them.”

The notice alleged Mr Macdonald “did in the course of and connected to his public office wilfully misconduct himself by granting Doyles Creek Mining Pty Ltd consent to apply for an exploration licence under the Mining Act 1992, without reasonable cause or justification”.

He was also involved in misconduct “by granting to Doyles Creek Mining Pty Ltd Exploration Licence No. 7270 under the Mining Act 1992, without reasonable justification”, the court notice alleged.

A court attendance notice was also served on Mr Maitland for two counts of being an accessory before the fact to misconduct in public office “in relation to aiding, abetting, counselling and procuring the commission of the two offences by Mr Macdonald”.

Mr Macdonald has previously described the ICAC findings as “false” and “based on guess work and conjecture”.

Mr Maitland has also rejected the findings.

The matters are listed for mention at the Downing Centre Local Court on December 18.


 

Thu 20 Nov 2014, 12:34pm

Former New South Wales government minister Ian Macdonald has been ordered to appear in court after prosecutors decided to act on a corruption inquiry’s findings.

Mr Macdonald is being prosecuted for two alleged offences of misconduct in public office, after an Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) inquiry relating to the awarding of a mining licence.

ICAC’s Operation Acacia investigated Mr Macdonald’s decision to award the Doyles Creek mining licence in 2008, when he was resources minister.

The commission heard the then-Labor minister “gifted” the licence, in the Hunter Valley, to then-chairman of Doyles Creek Mining John Maitland without a competitive tender and against departmental advice.

The corruption watchdog recommended both Mr Macdonald and Mr Maitland be charged.

ICAC said a court attendance notice had been served on Mr Macdonald earlier today, after the DPP provided advice that Mr Macdonald should be prosecuted for two offences of misconduct in public office.

Mr Maitland was being prosecuted for being an accessory to misconduct in public office, ICAC said.

NSW Premier Mike Baird said it was “about time” Mr Macdonald was prosecuted.

“Ultimately, what you need to see is prosecutions,” he said.

“Those prosecutions coming forward is going to give great confidence to the community.

“That is exactly what they want to see – if someone does the wrong thing and if they abuse public office, if they act in their own interest, if they undertake corrupt activity, well, there are consequences and they need to face them.”

The notice alleged Mr Macdonald “did in the course of and connected to his public office wilfully misconduct himself by granting Doyles Creek Mining Pty Ltd consent to apply for an exploration licence under the Mining Act 1992, without reasonable cause or justification”.

He was also involved in misconduct “by granting to Doyles Creek Mining Pty Ltd Exploration Licence No. 7270 under the Mining Act 1992, without reasonable justification”, the court notice alleged.

A court attendance notice was also served on Mr Maitland for two counts of being an accessory before the fact to misconduct in public office “in relation to aiding, abetting, counselling and procuring the commission of the two offences by Mr Macdonald”.

Mr Maitland is also being prosecuted for giving false evidence at ICAC.

The matters are listed for mention at the Downing Centre Local Court on December 18.

More on this story:

ICAC recommends cancellation of coal licences

ICAC finds Macdonald corrupt over Doyles Creek mine

Official advised against coal licence: ICAC

Coal licence a ‘goldmine’ for union boss: ICAC

 


  • Former Labor minister Ian Macdonald facing prosecution over Doyles Creek mine deal

    Date
    November 20, 2014 – 11:30AM

    Sydney Morning Herald State Political Editor

     Ian Macdonald facing prosecution over mining deal

    http://media.smh.com.au/news/nsw-news/ian-macdonald-facing-prosecution-over-mining-deal-6007934.html

    Former NSW Labor minister Ian Macdonald is the first person to be prosecuted after an ICAC inquiry into the Doyles Creek mine deal

    Former Labor minister Ian Macdonald is being prosecuted for misconduct in public office following a corruption inquiry into the issuing of lucrative mining licences at Doyles Creek in the Hunter Valley.

    In a statement, the Independent Commission Against Corruption announced a court attendance notice was served on Mr Macdonald on Thursday on the advice of the NSW director of public prosecutions.

    Last year the ICAC found Mr Macdonald acted corruptly as a minister in 2008 by granting a licence at Doyles Creek to a company then headed by former union official John Maitland.

    Former Labor Minister Ian Macdonald exits the ICAC hearing in February 2013.Former Labor Minister Ian Macdonald exits the ICAC hearing in February 2013. Photo: Nic Walker

    The company, Doyles Creek Mining, was later taken over by NuCoal Resources. Mr Maitland made millions of dollars from the deal.

    The ICAC found Mr Macdonald awarded the exploration licence – without tender and against departmental advice – to his “mate” Mr Maitland, a former national secretary of the Construction, Mining, Forestry and Energy Union.

    The court notice says that Mr Macdonald “did in the course of, and connected to his public office, wilfully misconduct himself” by granting Doyles Creek Mining consent to apply for exploration licences “without reasonable cause or justification”.

    The ICAC has also announced Mr Maitland is being prosecuted “for two counts of being an accessory before the fact to misconduct in public office, in relation to aiding, abetting, counselling and procuring the commission of the two offences by Mr Macdonald”.

    He is also being prosecuted for giving false and misleading evidence to the ICAC.

    The announcement represents the first time prosecutions have been launched against key players in a series of major corruption inquiries into the handling of coal licences held by the ICAC involving Mr Macdonald and former Labor minister Eddie Obeid.

    The ICAC has also indicated more prosecutions could flow from its inquiry into Doyles Creek, codenamed Operation Acacia.

    The businessmen who bankrolled Doyles Creek Mining, Craig Ransley and Andrew Poole, were also found to have acted corruptly by the ICAC last year.

    The ICAC found Mr Ransley, Mr Maitland and Mr Poole deliberately set out to ensure they did not face a public tender for the licence and made false statements to the government to obtain the exploration approval.

    “The Commission is awaiting advice from the DPP in relation to further briefs it has provided with respect to Operation Acacia,” the statement said on Thursday.

    The Doyles Creek licence has been “torn up” by the NSW government on the advice of the ICAC, prompting legal action by NuCoal which has flagged it is seeking compensation of “at least” $500 million.

‘Father-son DNA link’ between 1999 Irma Palasics killing and 2010 Woden break-in


A kid caught a few years back on CCTV trying to break into an old PitchnPutt venue may crack the cold case here. HIS DNA also belongs to the unidentified DNA of the man that murdered (or was present) in 1999 when Irma Palasics was bashed to death in the killers search for money and jewelery in the home…SOMEONE can help, and knows who it is! This new DNA technique could soon be solving Crimes decades old on a regular basis through the children of criminals

Make sure to watch the 60 minutes story which run last night. (2 parts down the page)

Simply put this persons father was involved. The first of the young group of fools who tried to break into PitchnPutt may be able to make 500,000 by identifying the person in the video leading to an arrest and conviction!

A murder mystery like no other - two apparently unrelated crimes, 11 years apart. One is a relatively harmless teenage prank. The other a cowardly murder of a Canberra grandmother. 72 year old Irma Palacsics was bashed and murdered in her own home in 1999.  Fifteen years on, the killers probably thought they’d got away with it, but a recent break-in at a local “pitch and putt”, has this cold case warming up. Extraordinary new forensic science has linked the two crimes and, now, a son is about to betray his killer father.

Mon 3 Nov 2014, 1:57pm

New DNA technology has linked the cold-case murder of a 72-year-old woman in 1999 to a golf course burglary more than 10 years later, ACT Policing say.

Irma Palasics and her husband Gregor were bound, gagged and viciously bashed when two men broke in and ransacked their home on Grover Crescent in McKellar on November 6, 1999.

After the offenders left, Mr Palasics was able to free himself and phone police, but Mrs Palasics died from her injuries.

Mr Palasics, severely injured, traumatised and grief-stricken, died within a year.

Years later, sensitive new technology used to examine DNA evidence from the scene linked Mrs Palasics’ death to what would seem like an unconnected incident in 2010, when four teenagers broke into the Woden Pitch and Putt.

Police have revealed the DNA evidence suggested a child-parent link, between a perpetrator of the Pitch and Putt break-in and what happened at the Palasics’ home.

Senior Constable Jarryd Dunbar told Channel Nine the tests suggested the son of one of Mrs Palasics’ attackers was involved in the Pitch and Putt break-in, although there was a small possibility it could have been someone from his extended family.

He said the son was believed to have been at an 18th birthday party at the Slovenian-Australian Association across the road from the Pitch and Putt earlier that evening.

“Whoever was at that party will be able to identify who those persons are in the CCTV,” he said.

Call to Crime Stoppers ended before information was given

Police said that on October 20 this year, a man contacted Crime Stoppers and indicated he could identify people in the CCTV footage but ended the call before providing any information.

“This is a horrific crime which happened in the sanctity of someone’s own home,” Senior Constable Dunbar said.

“Come forward and give us the information we need, so the family can put this crime behind them.

“[Gregor] went to his death a few years later always with the thought in his mind that he had failed in some way as a husband and as a protector.”

Police said they were not concerned about the act of vandalism at the Pitch and Putt, and this would not be a problem for anyone considering giving information.

“We don’t want your name, we just want the information you have that could lead to any convictions,” Crime Stoppers CEO Bryan Roach said.

Police said DNA from the murder scene was also placed on Interpol database with no match.

Facefit of suspect released

Prior to her death, Irma and her husband were robbed in 1997 and again in 1998 at their old home in Pelsart Street in Red Hill.

On June 29, 1997, an excess of $100,000 in cash, numerous items of expensive jewellery and a number of Australian $200 gold coins were taken.

About a year later on October 10, 1998, two men were disturbed by Mrs Palasics in the process of a another burglary.

Mrs Palasics was assaulted and during a struggle she managed to pull the balaclava from the head of one offender before both men escaped.

Police said new DNA technology had also helped them link the man wearing the balaclava to the eventual murder scene in McKellar.

DNA taken from a number of tape lifts from the balaclava matched DNA profiles from the the Palasics’ home after the murder.

Officers said it was the first time a link had been established between the two crime scenes.

Police were told by a witness to the aggravated robbery that a man got into a 1980s model silver or blue-coloured sedan with a possibly faulty headlines and ACT rego plates on Quiros Street in Red Hill.

Officers believe this man was one of the offenders.

The witness also told police he saw a second witness walking his dog in the area, who looked about 45 to 50 years old, around 186cm tall, with a solid build, short black, curly hair and a black beard.

The man was wearing black rimmed glasses, a dark long-sleeved shirt and long pants, and was walking a tan labrador or retriever dog.

Police said they suspected all three incidents were linked and have released a computer-generated image of a suspect from the 1998 burglary.

They have also released an image of the potential witness who was walking his dog.

Witnesses urged to come forward

There is a $500,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of Mrs Palasics’ killers and police have urged people with information to come forward to help solve the crime.

Mrs Palasics’ daughter Elizabeth Mikita said the family were unable to move on without knowing her killed their mother.

“She was a lovely, caring person, much loved by her family and friends and we think about her every day,” she said.

“Her death has been devastating and while we continue to recover 15 years on, we need to know who killed her and why.

“Without answers to these questions we cannot move forward, we cannot rest and we cannot overcome our grief.”

Ms Mikita said the people who killed her mother not only took her life, but also her father’s.

“He was never the same after her death. He died believing that he had failed to protect his wife. It wasn’t his fault and he didn’t deserve to live out the final years of his life blaming himself,” she said.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, or via the website. Information can be provided anonymously.

A special phone-in to try to uncover more information about the case has been organised for Thursday – the 15th anniversary of Mrs Palasics’ death.

Irma Palasics – $500 000 reward

About 9.30pm on Saturday 6 November 1999 two men forced their way into the McKellar home of elderly couple, Gregor and Irma Palasics.

The couple were bound and savagely beaten before the men ransacked their home and stole cash and jewellery. Irma did not survive her injuries and died at the scene.

Gregor and Irma were victims of a burglary in 1997 and an aggravated burglary in 1998 when they lived in Red Hill.

During the burglary in 1997 unknown offender(s) stole a large sum of cash and jewellery.

Police suspect that a possible link exists between the burglaries in 1997 and 1998 and the home invasion (aggravated burglary) on 6 November which resulted in the murder of Irma Palasics.

60 Minutes Exclusive

See the full 60 Minutes episode

or part one a part 2 here http://www.jump-in.com.au/show/60minutes/stories/2014/october/who-killed-irma/

Pitch and Putt CCTV

Public appeal video

Recent developments

In August 2012 police released CCTV footage of an attempted aggravated burglary at Pitch & Putt in Phillip which took place 1.50am, Sunday 16 May 2010. Five teenagers appear in the CCTV footage, showing them break into the Pitch & Putt golf course by charging at the metal roller door of the storage area.

Police believe forensic evidence links the Pitch & Putt attempted burglary with the crime scene in November 1999 which resulted in the murder of Irma Palasics.

Police are urging anyone with any information, no matter how small, to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Information can be provided anonymously.

A $500 000 reward is in place for information leading to the apprehension and subsequent conviction of the person(s) responsible for Irma’s murder and an appropriate indemnity from prosecution will be considered for any accomplice who first gives information.

Reward poster for Irma (PDF)

Media releases for Irma

Northern Territory to launch online public sex offender register-Please follow suit


Bruce and Denise Morcombe

Photo: Bruce and Denise Morcombe attended the announcement of the NT’s public sex offender register. (ABC News: Ruby Jones)

Convicted sex offenders in the Northern Territory will soon have their name, image, physical description and whereabouts posted on a government website.

Legislation announced today has been named Daniel’s Law after Queensland teenager Daniel Morcombe, who was murdered in 2003 by a convicted sex offender on parole.

Although details have not been finalised, it was believed all of the information published about a sex offender would be publicly accessible.

The NT Criminal Lawyers Association slammed the idea, saying naming and shaming made it harder for offenders to rehabilitate without making anyone safer.

NT Attorney-General John Elferink said it would be the first website of its kind in Australia and it was expected to be launched next year.

Western Australia has an online sex register but access has several tiers of restrictions.

It is not yet clear how approximate the location information for the NT register will be. Mr Elferink said the website would include the “regional whereabouts”.

We truly hope that the introduction of Daniel’s Law will prevent another family going through the pain and grief we experienced following Daniel’s death.

Bruce and Denise Morcombe

“We’ll list them by geographical region reasonably close to where [people] live. It is not a system of exact addresses,” he said.

“They will be able to see who the sexual predators are in the community. They’ll be able to recognise the sexual predators and protect their children.

“We believe that the public’s right to know takes precedence over the privacy concerns for serious sex offenders.

“The initiative will allow individuals and families to familiarise themselves with important details and be more vigilant about named serious sex offenders living in and around the area.”

Daniel’s Law modelled on Megan’s Law in US

The NT chose to pursue its own legislation after a proposed national sex offenders register was knocked back at the recent Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting, according to Mr Elferink.

“From our perspective if it’s not done at a Commonwealth level then we’re going to do it in the NT and proudly so,” he said.

“Does a government make this information available or not? The answer from the NT is ‘yes, yes we do’.

“There is no guarantee a website would have protected Daniel. We know we should pull out all stops as a society and as a community to create for parents an environment to protect their children.”

He said the NT system would be modelled on Megan’s Law in the United States – the informal name for sex offender registration and community notification laws, which have been passed at US federal and state levels.

However, unlike Megan’s Law, Daniel’s Law will not list offenders’ exact address.

The Attorney-General said the Government had not yet decided on the definition of “serious sex offender”.

“We’ll create a definition which is appropriate and then have further flexible arrangements to make sure the right people are placed on our serious sex offenders website.”

He said parents were in a better position to protect their child when they were armed with detailed information.

“While the Northern Territory Police will continue to track and monitor around 200 sex offenders in the community, this tool is designed to deliver information to the community about the most serious offenders in an easy, user-friendly way,” he said.

‘You’d hate to be the last state to have a register’

Daniel’s parents Bruce and Denise Morcombe, who have been calling for the introduction of a national child sex offender register, said they hoped the NT register would spread across the country.

“Of course sometimes one can imagine the paedophiles and the predators on the NT sex offenders register may well not want to be in the NT any longer,” Mr Morcombe said.

“They may migrate to other states and territories.

“You’d hate to be the last state to have a sex offenders register up and running. You’re going to get truckloads of people you don’t want in your state.”

The couple, who were in Darwin for the announcement, said they commended the NT’s decision.

“The NT has taken a leadership step,” Mr Morcombe said. “They were the first to do so.

“This is for ordinary Australians. It is to get the good people at arms length from the predators.

“We want protection for our kids.

“Daniel’s Law we are confident will assist in the mission to make sure kids of Australia are safe.

“We think it is breathtakingly simple but at the end of the day will make a massive difference for children right around the country.

“I am sure the feedback from that will migrate to other states and they’ll say, ‘Why not us?’”

Daniel disappeared when he was 13 while waiting for a bus at Woombye on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast in 2003.

His remains were found in bushland eight years later.

His convicted killer, Brett Peter Cowan, had a long history of sexually abusing children.

He had been arrested and sentenced in 1989 for two years in jail after molesting a boy in a public toilets.

Four years later, while living in a caravan park in Darwin, Cowan attacked a six-year-old boy. He later pleaded guilty to gross indecency, grievous bodily harm and deprivation of liberty.

He was sentenced to seven years’ jail and released on parole four years later.

‘Terrible idea will turn people into vigilantes’

Public online sex registers make it harder for offenders to rehabilitate, increase the chance they will re-offend, and do not make anyone safer, according to NT Criminal Lawyers Association president Russell Goldflam.

He said the NT Government’s proposal was “terrible”.

From our perspective if it’s not done at a Commonwealth level then we’re going to do it in the NT and proudly so. Does a government make this information available or not? The answer from the NT is ‘yes, yes we do’.

John Elferink, NT Attorney-General

“Laws like this have been tried in the US, mainly over the last couple of decades,” he said. “They don’t result in anyone being safer or the level of recidivism being decreased.

“There are some real costs. They are expensive to run but more importantly is they can get in the way of people being rehabilitated.

“This can result in people going underground instead of engaging with those who can assist them to stop reoffending

“In a place like the the NT we expect anyone who is going to be put on the register will leave the NT and go somewhere else. That doesn’t help anybody. It just makes it harder to keep track of them.”

He said the system would further stigmatise, prejudice and stereotype convicted sex offenders.

“A very significant range of laws operate to protect the community from people who may be at risk of reoffending,” he said. “There is already a register, already a provision for for identifying offenders, already laws to detain serious repeat sex offenders.

“Where these laws have been passed in the US – and they have in some places included exact places where people live – vigilantes have murdered people on the list or people they believe are on the list, even if they weren’t child sex offenders.

“The Attorney-General says this will make people be more vigilant.

“Our concern is this will make more people into vigilantes.”

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