Thursday, June 14, 2012

I am DEEPLY suspicious of this prosecution

If you are unlucky enough  to be in the vicinity when a murder is committed,  the Qld. cops are likely to say you did it.  The thoroughly reprehensible prosecutions  of the unfortunate Barry Mannix and Graham Stafford  are evidence enough of that.  And the crooked cops who fitted up both men have never been punished

And it's sheer laziness behind such practices.  I have twice supplied police with precise ID for people who have committed offences against me but no discernible action was taken in either case.  In one case the ID was simply thrown into the bin on the apparent grounds that car thefts are too minor to be taken seriously. 

And I don't mind naming the irresponsible police constable who "lost" the ID concerned.  It was the Virgin Turgeon of Dutton Park cop shop,  who still works there but who has since been promoted.  If she sues me for defamation,  I would be overjoyed to air the whole matter in court.  And I have the means to do so.

And the Baden-Clay case fits the laziness mould.  He was the husband of the deceased so suspicion automatically fell on him.  The fact that they could find nothing to pin on him for months and the fact that the forensic science results turned  up nothing show how weak the case is

And although he is a man of known good character with only the normal quantum of human weaknessess, that apparently did not count either. 

The chief thing that made him "suspicious" appears  to be that he appeared insufficiently emotional about his wife's death.  Those  who know anything about Australian judicial history will however recall that as being the chief charge against  Lindy Chamberlain  -- and we all know how that turned out.  Hollywood even made a movie out of it

GERARD Baden-Clay spent last night behind bars after being charged with the murder of his wife Allison.

Nearly two months after phoning police to say the woman he called his "angel" had disappeared, he was taken into police custody on Wednesday and charged with causing her death.  He was also charged with unlawfully interfering with a corpse.

The real estate agent arrived at Indooroopilly police station yesterday afternoon where he met head of homicide Detective Superintendent Brian Wilkins and the top cop in charge of the drawn-out investigation, Detective Superintendent Mark Ainsworth.

The detectives left the station at about 5.20pm, refusing to comment.

It is understood Baden-Clay was in the police station for several hours before his lawyer Darren Mahony arrived.  On his way in, Mr Mahony confirmed his client was inside. About an hour later he emerged and said his client was about to be charged.  "Police have indicated the intention to charge my client with murder," Mr Mahony said. "He's devastated."

He said Baden-Clay would "defend the charge vigorously".

Members of the public watched as media waited for Baden-Clay's departure. Shortly after, the 41-year-old was bundled, handcuffed, into a police car and driven to the Brisbane watchhouse by detectives.  Upon arrival at the watchhouse, Baden-Clay looked shocked but just stared straight ahead.

Allison Baden-Clay was reported missing by her husband at 7.30am on April 20 when he told police she had left the house the previous night and not returned.

Her disappearance sparked a massive search, with police turning up on their days off to join dozens of investigators and State Emergency Services volunteers to scour the bush around the family's Brookfield home.

Search crews checked dams and abandoned mine shafts in the densely wooded suburb, pleading with locals to conduct searches of their own properties.

Her body was found 10 days later by a kayaker on the banks of the Kholo Creek at Anstead. At the same time, homicide detectives and scientific investigators arrived at Baden-Clay's Brookfield Rd home.

Police asked The Courier-Mail to move back and blocked the driveway with their cars while investigators scoured the property with torches.

Yesterday, the couple's three daughters, aged 10, 8 and 5, were taken into police care at a separate station before being collected by Allison's parents, Geoff and Priscilla Dickie.

Baden-Clay's parents, Nigel and Elaine, made no comment to media when they arrived at their Kenmore home yesterday evening.

Allison Baden-Clay was an accomplished ballerina who travelled Australia and the UK as a girl with the Australian Youth ballet.

As an adult, she spoke six languages and rose through the ranks from a Flight Centre sales assistant to the company's national human resources manager.

It was while working at Flight Centre that she met Gerard Baden-Clay. She left her career behind to care for her family of three daughters.

Her husband's great-grandfather, Lord Baden-Powell, started the scouting movement, a fact Baden-Clay mentioned often in his online business profiles.

He was regularly quoted in media reports about the real estate market.  "In business, it's simple: never lie," he said in 2008. "For starters, it's the wrong thing to do but secondly you will always get caught out and usually when you least expect it.  "There are just too many people, too many personalities, too many trails ... and too much to lose."


Bureaucratic obtuseness defeated for once

Immigration bureaucracies worldwide are mini-Kremlins

THE Immigration Minister has ordered his department to allow British policeman Peter Threlfall and his family into Australia.

Chris Bowen's intervention followed revelations in The Advertiser yesterday that the family had been denied visas because Mr Threlfall's 25-year-old step-daughter, Sarah, has autism.

Mr Threlfall last night likened the backflip to winning the lottery.

He said SA Police had told him his original job offer as a constable in Ceduna would be honoured, and he hoped to be in Australia by September. "This is unbelievable. I just can't get over it," Mr Threlfall said from London.

"I knew it was achievable, it was just getting the right person to overturn this bad decision, but it was so hard to get to that person. My wife is in tears - we are so happy."

The Threlfalls were originally denied visas because an Immigration Department medical officer deemed Sarah's condition would place a burden on health- care and community services in Australia.

This was despite the fact Sarah has two jobs and plans to study as a hairdresser in Australia. Disability advocates last night applauded Mr Bowen's intervention, but demanded the immediate scrapping of the "discriminatory" policy behind the original decision.

Intellectual Disability Association of SA chairman David Holst and Greens immigration spokeswoman Sarah Hanson-Young both called on the Government to bring immigration policies into line with a 2010 parliamentary report on the issue.

"This case, like similar ones in recent years show why there must be reforms to the health waiver requirement," Ms Hanson-Young said.

"The Greens call on the Government to fulfil the recommendations from the Enabling Australia 2010 parliamentary inquiry report, particularly raising the 'cost threshold' of the health requirement and those criteria affecting family migration."

Opposition immigration spokesman Mitch Fifield said there needed to be greater flexibility in cases such as that of the Threlfalls.

Mr Threlfall hoped his case would help ensure policy change after the Immigration Department deemed Sarah could be a $500,000 burden on Australian healthcare and social services, despite assurances she was employed, largely self-reliant and rarely sought medical assistance in London.

"You can't adopt a hypothetical situation without taking into account any positives," he said.

A spokesman for Mr Bowen said after learning about the case he had asked the department to "facilitate entry for the family".

Migration Institute of Australia state president Mark Glazbrook said cases such as this were too common.

"There is this general assumption that certain conditions will have a high cost and because of that the visa will be refused, even when you can get strong evidence to say there shouldn't be a high cost," he said.

The Threlfall family received a deluge of support from readers of AdelaideNOW and The Advertiser's Facebook page yesterday.

"That's disgusting! Let them in and stop the discrimination against disability," one reader commented.

Autism Advisory and Support Service president Grace Fava applauded the decision, saying people should not have to live with a label.

SA Police Assistant Commissioner Bryan Fahy said SAPOL would honour its original employment offer.


Careless public hospital kills toddler

Bacterial meningitis is such a swift killer that precautions against it should always be top priority

A MAJOR Perth hospital has launched an investigation into the death of a 17-month-old baby girl who passed away after being given the all clear to go home.

Baby Hayley, from Parmelia, was rushed to Swan District Hospital by her mum Pamilla on Monday, Ten News reported tonight.  The toddler, who had a rash and was vomiting, was admitted to hospital with symptoms of meningococcal infection.

A nurse at the hospital said it was unclear what Hayley’s condition was, giving her Nurofen and water.

Pamilla was told at 7am the next morning that she could take her daughter home by a doctor but refused to leave when she realised Hayley’s rash had spread across her body.  About two hours later, Hayley passed away.

"I've done everything I can to make sure my girls are happy and my kids are healthy and what for, " mother Pamilla said.  "When you have to bury your own child for something that could have been prevented, it's horrible.  "I can't cope right now - I've got a three-year-old that I've got to try and explain that her sister's not coming back anymore. I want answers."

A spokesperson from the North Metropolitan Area Health Service said: “We express our condolences to the family for the tragic loss of their daughter.  "We are in the process of conducting a full investigation of the case.

"Due to patient confidentiality we cannot comment on specific patient details at this time.  "As the matter has now been referred to the Coroner it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.”


It's ok to swear at the boss, says Labor party lapdog

FAIR Work Australia has ordered the reinstatement of an employee who was sacked for telling his boss to "get f ... ed".

Security guard Craig Symes was sacked from Linfox Armaguard last year after he told his manager to get f ... ed, complained about the "f ... ing roster" and then aggressively poked a notice board - all while carrying a loaded gun.

Symes, who had worked with the Brisbane firm since 2000, cracked during a monthly meeting last December after having a fight with his wife before work. "He was frustrated with his wife and, in hindsight, should not have come (to the meeting)," FWA heard.

He abused manager Aryn Hala after being assigned to a faulty armoured van and stormed out.  Symes later apologised in writing but was sacked the next day.

FWA ruled Symes' behaviour amounted to misconduct but found his dismissal was harsh.

While finding swearing at a person was "of a different character" to swearing at an object, or as an adjective, FWA Commissioner Helen Cargill said it was "also relevant to consider the evidence that the respondent's workplace is one in which bad language is commonly used and in which ... employees may have received mixed messages about such use".

She said the swearing was not "overheard by other employees which could have undermined Mr Halas' authority".

Ms Cargill ordered the company reinstate Symes with back pay - less six weeks pay as a penalty.


Prime Minister Julia Gillard says company tax rate should be lowered to help businesses compete with Asian rivals

Fine talk but she's said it all before  -- with no resultant action

AUSTRALIA'S company tax rate should be lowered to help businesses compete with Asian rivals, Julia Gillard says.  The Prime Minister also wants State property taxes to be cut to encourage people to move to find work.

Ms Gillard floated these ideas in a speech to business leaders in Brisbane last night, saying she wanted her economic forum to focus on making Australia more competitive and creating a more mobile workforce.

But she faced demands from business groups taking part in the forum to cut the $23-a-tonne carbon tax and water-down workplace laws - measures she has ruled out.

As she opened the two-day summit, Ms Gillard urged businesses, unions and community groups to talk up Australia's economy to help boost confidence. She said any tax cuts would need to be revenue-neutral, meaning the money must be generated elsewhere without hurting the Government's tax base.

"We all need investment to flow, we all need jobs to grow, we all need consumers to spend," Ms Gillard told the forum.  "The facts speak up for Australia - but I will say to you, they don't just speak for themselves."  "So speak up, because we are strong today, and we do have a chance now to build that strength for the future."

In a upbeat speech, Ms Gillard told the 130 guests that Australia was in a strong economic position compared to the rest of the world.  But, she said, Australians could not rest on their laurels, saying they had to make our own luck.

Ms Gillard claimed credit for last week's national accounts figures, saying they showed the Government had "got the macro policy settings right" and that consumers were spending again.

Treasurer Wayne Swan told the forum Australian companies needed to build stronger ties with China, as the participants were presented with an update on the Government's "Asian Century" white paper.

Mr Swan called for bipartisan political support for helping businesses break into Asian markets and announced he would lead a delegation of business people to Hong Kong and Beijing next month.

He also called for a "mature" debate about Australia's flagging productivity levels, saying we should aim to increase our performance from about the top dozen countries to within the top ten.

Reserve Bank of Australia governor Glenn Stevens will address the forum this morning before sessions led by key ministers on the impact of the high dollar, innovation, infrastructure, skills and cutting red tape.

Business leaders taking part in the talks include Rio Tinto managing director David Peever, GM Holden chairman Mike Devereux, QR National chief executive Lance Hockridge and ASX chief executive Elmer Funke Kupper.

Premier Campbell Newman has shunned the forum, along with the NSW and WA premiers, but Victorian Liberal Premier Ted Baillieu is attending with other Labor leaders.

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott dismissed the forum as a "carefully stage-managed, choreographed event which is just about trying to conscript people into supporting policies they don't agree with".


1 comment:

Paul said...

Meningococcal disease in babies is frightening and unpredictable. I recall a case where, in our ICU, under the watch of a senior and thoroughly competent nurse, and with every proper treatment in place, a child still died, as quickly as though a switch had been flicked. Massive and sudden brain swelling caused by the Meningococcus bacterium toxins. Once the disease is established you have to ventilate them, and lay on the AB's thick and fast and hope like hell. If its missed at the diagnostic stage then hope is already gone. That incident devastated us as well as the parents, and reminded us all how our clever technologies and best training can still be impotent in the face of what horrors nature can throw up.