Tag Archives: VicPol

Probing Victoria Police and the Royal Commission

Douglas Drummond, former Queensland Special Prosecutor and a judge on the Federal Court of Australia, has written a powerful piece, fearlessly probing the record of Victoria Police (in particular about the Pell jailing) and the Royal Commission into institutional child sexual abuse. He is to be commended.

The frightening bias of VicPol and the commission continues to unfold. Australia needs a thorough investigation into the background of the country’s worst ever miscarriage of justice. What happened to Cardinal Pell could happen to anyone.

I have added a tab on Victoria Police to the Cardinal Pell section of my website.

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The Unexplored Shame of Victoria Police

by Douglas Drummond, Quadrant, 3 July 2020

The Catholic Church and its bishops have been subjected to a lot of deserved criticism by the Royal Commission, the media, survivors and others for their failures to deal with the sexual abuse of children by priests, particularly over the decades from the 1960s to the 1990s. Victoria Police has largely escaped criticism, though it made similar failures during this same period.

At the first public session of the Commission in August 2015, it said that, as well as religious institutions, were police force were one of the types of institutions it would be investigating.

Catholic Diocese of Ballarat

In its Final Report in Case Study 28, the Royal Commission said: “The scope and purpose of Part Two of that case study involving the Ballarat Diocese was to inquire into:

1. the response of the Diocese and of other Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat to allegations of child sexual abuse against clergy or religious

2. the response of Victoria Police to allegations of child sexual abuse against clergy or religious which took place within the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat”.

The Commission made a full inquiry into the first item. But its inquiry into the second item was in a number of respects surprisingly deficient.

Gerald Ridsdale

Ridsdale (right) was probably the worst of the many paedophile priests in Victoria, if not Australia. Much of his offending took place in parishes in the Ballarat Diocese. The Commission noted Ridsdale was convicted in 1993, and later, of sexual offences against a total of 65 children as young as four which occurred from the 1960s until the 1980s. This was only part of his criminal activities: according to The Age report of June 14, 2002, [“Ballarat’s good men of the cloth”] just before his first trial in 1993, Ridsdale told his family of his crimes. One family member asked: “How many, Gerald. Four, or five?” “Hundreds,” was his reply.

Read the rest here…

Facing the rot in Vicpol (2)

This is the second part of an in-depth essay by Paul Collits on the stinking swamp of bigotry in which Daniel Andrews’ police force is mired.

Reforming VicPol in a Post Pell Environment – Part Two

Written by Paul Collits

Accepting that the Victorian institutions involved in getting Pell need reforming, this two part essay explores the uncanny parallels between the Pell case here and similar cases in the UK, and draws lessons from these in charting a course towards reform.

The Henriques Report on Operation Midland in the UK

The second UK case study which has an almost creepy resonance with the Pell case is the Carl Beech affair and the UK Met’s infamous Operation Midland (2014 to 2016).  To recap, a complainant known initially as “Nick” and subsequently revealed to be one Carl Beech alleged all sorts of horrendous crimes supposedly committed by a very high profile British political and other figures.  This was the paedophile ring’s paedophile ring.  He named names.  Big names.  And the Met simply “believed him”, trapped as it was in the moral panic associated with the sex abuse of children that followed the Jimmy Savile revelations and the various legal changes that had occurred in Britain, many driven by the Tony Blair Government.  Beech is now serving an 18 year prison sentence after his fabrications were revealed as such. 

A good summary of the relevance of the Beech case to Cardinal Pell can be found here, at Damian Thompson’s UK Spectator podcast, Holy Smoke.

Just as police trawling found its grim way from Britain to Victoria, so too did MeTooism and the treatment of all complainants as “victims”, flipping the presumption of innocence in the process.

Read the rest here

Facing the rot in VicPol

This is the first part of an in-depth essay by Paul Collits on the stinking swamp of bigotry in which Daniel Andrews’ police force is mired.

Reforming VicPol in a Post Pell Environment

Written by Paul Collits

Accepting that the Victorian institutions involved in getting Pell need reforming, this two part essay explores the uncanny parallels between the Pell case here and similar cases in the UK, and draws lessons from these in charting a course towards reform.

Since the Australian High Court’s legal exoneration of George Cardinal Pell, debates have taken off in many directions.  The baying mob has spoken through graffiti and on social media.  Media pundits have had their say.  The Cardinal’s supporter groups online have been overjoyed but are still angry.  International observers have suggested Australia’s justice system has dodged a bullet in having its reputation for the rule of law saved by the bell.  Politicians and others where perennially grieve for victims of abuse have mumbled and grumbled.  “We still believe you, indeed now, more than ever we believe you”, they chant.

Many want answers to the question – how did this happen in Australia?  There are now increasingly audible demands for an inquiry, or inquiries, into the key arms of the legal system in Victoria.  These demands are growing by the day.

Read the rest here