Archive for November, 2014



Former Cairns childcare director sentenced for filming and taking photos of naked boys

A FORMER Cairns childcare director has been released on a wholly suspended jail sentence after pleading guilty to filming and taking photos of two naked five year old boys.

Daniel Patrick Maher had met one of the boys through his work in childcare. This boy then formed a friendship with a boy, who was the adopted son of the two men that Maher lived with.

The Cairns District Court was told those two men had been sentenced to substantial jail terms in the United States for offending involving children.

Crown prosecutor Brendan Manttan said that in early 2011, police seized electronic equipment from their Kewarra Beach home. Due to the sophisticated encryption used, the film and images weren’t discovered until 2013.

The court was told Maher was arrested and charged the day after he had been sentenced for commonwealth offending that involved sending images and videos of young boys aged five to eight years to a man in the United States.

Defence barrister Josh Trevino told the court his client had undergone significant rehabilitation since being sentenced over these matters including psychotherapy.

The court was told Maher had been unable to reconcile his homosexuality with his religious beliefs. A report described Maher as extremely naive.

Judge Brian Harrison, in summing up, said Maher had wanted to impress the man in the United States as well as the male couple he resided with.

Because Maher had already served a little under four months jail while awaiting sentence, Judge Harrison said he saw little point in sending him back to jail and that it was more important his rehabilitation continued.

Former Cairns childcare centre manager and friend of notorious pedophiles pleads guilty to child porn charges

  • Vanda Carson
  • The Courier-Mail
  • November 22, 2014 4:45AM

THE former manager of a Cairns childcare centre who lived with two of the nation’s most notorious pedophiles faces jail for child porn.

Daniel Patrick Maher, 30, lived with Cairns couple Peter Truong and Mark Newton in the months before they were charged in the US with sexually exploiting their “adopted” son by allowing pedophiles to molest him when he was aged between two and six.

In the Brisbane District Court yesterday, Maher pleaded guilty to sending 13 pornographic photos of children aged as young as five to a Texas sex offender who was in a depraved abuse network.

At the time, Maher sent the photos to Mark Lawless, 35, from Texas, he knew his housemates Truong and Newton were facing charges of trafficking their son to the pedophile network.

Lawless was a friend of Truong and Newton and was allowed to abuse their young son, whom they bought from Russia in 2005 for $8000.

Maher was working at the Penguin Childcare Centre in Cairns North when he sent the explicit photos and made Skype calls to Lawless to discuss them.

He also sent photos of two naked young boys to Lawless.

Maher’s barrister Lincoln Crowley told the court that Maher was living in the northern NSW town of Grafton when he met Truong and Newton online through the photo sharing service Flickr and they invited him to live with him.

Maher “idolised” Truong and Newton because they were “a gay couple who were successful, they had an adopted son and a relationship that Maher would never be able to obtain”, Mr Crowley said.

In the months before his arrest in Victoria in October last year, Maher was working as a director of Essendon Fields Kinder Haven.

After his arrest, he took part in an indigenous job program with Coles supermarkets.

Newton was sentenced by a US court to 40 years for his sex abuse, while Truong is serving 30 years.

Maher was charged after US authorities gave evidence to Queensland police.

Maher will be sentenced by Judge Michael Burnett on Wednesday.


Join us on Facebook



Maurice Van Ryn - Photo



Van Ryn has had his sentence increased from seven years to 13 years & six months following an appeal by the Director of Public Prosecutions.



Judge Clive Jeffreys sentenced Maurice Van Ryn to 13 years in jail and a non parole period of 7 years

for child sex offences of nine boys and girls between 2003 and 2014 on the New South Wales South Coast.

Former CEO of Bega Cheese guilty of child sexual abuse in NSW

Thu 27 Nov 2014, 3:33pm

A former chief executive of Bega Cheese has been identified as the man who this week pleaded guilty to multiple charges of child sexual abuse on the NSW far south coast.

Maurice Van Ryn sexually abused and indecently assaulted six boys at his Tathra home over the past eight years.

He appeared in Bega Local Court this week and pleaded guilty to all charges.

Van Ryn was the CEO of Bega Cheese from 1990 to 2005 and had worked with the company for more than 18 years.

Police applied for him to be kept in custody, but he was released on bail while awaiting sentencing in February.

The NSW Attorney General, Brad Hazzard, has asked the Director of Public Prosecutions to urgently review the decision to grant him bail.


Join us on Facebook




Chief Justice Helen Murrell sentenced Philpot to 19 months in jail, but released him on a two-and-a-half-year recognisance release order, which imposes conditions such as good behaviour, counselling for up to two years and supervision by the ACT Corrections Directorate for two years.

Former NSW school principal pleads guilty to accessing child pornography

By Elizabeth Byrne

Thu 27 Nov 2014, 5:04pm

A former New South Wales primary school principal will be sentenced in the ACT Supreme Court after pleading guilty to a charge of accessing child pornography.

Michael Philpot, 58, had been principal of a school in the NSW town of Young.

He was arrested last year after his employer found sexually explicit text messages and photos on his work phone.

Court documents reveal Philpot had made contact with a 13 or 14-year-old Canberra boy on an app called Grindr, before the pair communicated by phone sharing explicit conversations by text, and sending each other inappropriate images.

He has been charged with using a carriage service to access child pornography.

Philpot left the school last year after the material was found.

He will return to the ACT Supreme Court next month for sentencing.


Join us on Facebook

Lowe – Simon – aka Bonito Monteiro - Photo.



Monteiro is back in prison after he breached his parole conditions less than two months after his release.

In a statement the State Parole Authority said, though he failed to comply with his conditions, “he did not commit an offence”.



Monteiro will be released from jail following a decision by the NSW Parole Board. The date of his release has not been finalised.



Monteiro will spend at least another 11 months behind bars after he was refused parole. His parole will be reviewed in August 2017.

Judgment day for so-called ‘playboy rapist’ Simon Monteiro

  • November 27, 20144:06PM

A VICTIM of the man dubbed the ‘playboy rapist’ is relieved for the safety of Sydney women after the convicted sex criminal has lost an appeal for freedom.

Simon Monteiro was jailed for up to 12 years after he bashed, raped and threatened an eastern suburbs woman over 12 months.

A self-proclaimed actor and model, Monteiro will now stay behind bars after his second attempt to appeal his sentence, using a complex legal loophole, was dismissed in the Supreme Court yesterday.

In a lengthy judgment, the court decided no lesser sentence was warranted, citing the seriousness of Monteiro’s offence, the fact that it occurred in a context of domestic violence, and his lack of contrition and remorse.

The court dismissed Monteiro’s appeal, deciding “no lesser sentence is warranted”, with one judge lamenting the “lenient” sentence period he is serving.

“A greater sentence may have been appropriate in this case, given the gravity of the appellant’s overall offending,” Justice Schmidt said handing down his judgment.

Monteiro, who was also known as Simon Lowe and Bonito Monteiro (a name he bragged to women was Portuguese for “beautiful hunter”), bashed and twice impregnated the 37-year-old woman in her Bellevue Hill apartment in 2007, his trial heard.

The woman initially thought she had met “the man of my dreams” before he became violent and possessive. The court heard Monteiro put his hand over the woman’s face while raping her, releasing his grip at times to allow her to breathe.

His sordid past was laid bare during the first appeal in 2011 when the Supreme Court heard details of his violence towards women.

Another ex-girlfriend, Kay Schubach, was waiting anxiously to hear the result of Monteiro’s appeal, telling she reacted with “utter disbelief” when she found a court was considering a lesser sentence for her abuser.

“I felt very afraid for Eastern suburbs Sydney women in general, and I was afraid for myself because I’d been quite public in bringing awareness to him and to cases like this,” she said.

Ms Schubach was with Monteiro, then known as Simon Lowe, for two months in 2003 and claims he raped and assaulted her — but she never went to police and was too afraid to give evidence at his trial.

“It’s an incredible relief,” she said of the appeal decision.

“I’m just so glad that justice has prevailed because he is litigious and he lacks any contrition or remorse for what he’s done.”

“He left a trail of traumatised women in his path, and if he gets out he’s going to do it again.

“We live in fear and I never know when I’m going to get a knock on the door. I don’t know how revengeful he might be.”

The loophole exploited by Monteiro comes from a precedent set by a 2011 case in the High Court of Australia involving Dereck Muldrock, who pleaded guilty to sexual assault.

The case clarified the way judges apply standard non-parole prison jail terms as a reference point for crimes where the seriousness was classified as mid-range or higher.

But the High Court found judges were putting too much weight on standard non-parole periods and that they should rely on their own discretion.

Monteiro will continue to serve his sentence and will be eligible for parole in 2015.

“At least after this the world is a safer place for at least another few years,” Ms Schubach said.


Join us on Facebook

Qld sex offender found in Bali school

  • November 27, 2014 11:35PM

AN Australian man with prior convictions for improper dealings with children has been caught teaching English classes in Bali and will be deported, authorities say.

JOHN Peter Domenic Rigano, 65, was caught teaching English in Kuta earlier this month in a sweep by immigration officers.

In 2009, Rigano, who was then a psychiatrist, was sentenced in the Cairns District Court to nine months’ jail, for indecently touching a teenage boy who was being treated for anxiety.

Bali authorities found Rigano was misusing a multiple entry visa and detained him.

He will be deported to Brisbane on Friday.

Head of Ngurah Rai Immigration Office, Mohamad Soleh, said staff at the English Now office at first told officers that no foreigners worked there.

“We were suspicious when we looked at the schedule on the wall of the office that said there were native speaker teachers there,” he said.

During questioning, Rigano revealed he had been convicted of sexually harassing underage boys in Australia, Mr Mohamad said.

Two other Australians, both young women teaching at the same English school, were also found working with the incorrect visas.

A fourth Australian, a 24-year-old woman, was discovered working as the operational manager at a Kuta hotel while her working permit was still pending approval.

The three were not detained and authorities have not decided whether to deport them.

Two Americans, one UK citizen, one Japanese citizen and four Norwegians were netted in the same operation.


Join us on Facebook

Angry scenes as Christian Brother jailed

By Eoin Blackwell

November 27, 2014, 12:04 pm

Former Christian Brother Desmond Eric Richards will spend at least two years in prison for indecently assaulting four boys at NSW schools more than 30 years ago.

The 75-year-old pleaded guilty earlier this month to abusing the boys between 1972 and 1982 in Albury, Wagga Wagga and Strathfield in Sydney’s inner west.

The NSW District Court sentenced him to a non-parole period of two years after imposing an aggregate sentence of 3 years and 3 months.

Richards’ victims shouted out in court after the sentence was handed down with one demanding the man be dragged back to the dock and sentenced to 30 years.

Although court had been told that Richards claimed to have no memory of the incidents, the former brother has said he was “rocked” by the impact his behaviour has had.


Join us on Facebook




Cowan - Brett Peter - Photo5

Brett Peter Cowan: Daniel Morcombe’s killer had long history of preying on children

Fri 14 Mar 2014, 7:50am

Daniel Morcombe’s killer Brett Peter Cowan is a serial predator with an extensive history of sexually abusing children.

The 44-year-year told an inquest into Daniel’s disappearance that by the time he turned 18 he had already preyed on up to 30 children.

He said his offending stretched back to when he was about nine or 10 years of age.

However, he was first convicted of a child sex offence in 1989 over the molestation of a seven-year-old boy in the public toilets of a Queensland playground.

He was sentenced to two years for indecent dealing.

Four years later while living in a Darwin caravan park, Cowan molested a six-year-old boy in a violent attack which left the child with a punctured lung.

Cowan left the boy to die in an old car in bushland before the naked, dazed and bleeding child staggered into a service station for help.

After initially denying any involvement in the attack, Cowan confessed after police told him they had found DNA evidence linking him to the crime.

In September 1993, Cowan pleaded guilty to gross indecency, grievous bodily harm and deprivation of liberty and was sentenced to seven years in jail.

After his release from prison on parole in 1998 he moved to the Sunshine Coast to be close to relatives and soon became involved in the Christian Outreach Church.

He met Tracey Moncrieff through the church and in 1999 they later married and had a child.

The couple were living in Beerwah at the time Daniel went missing. They divorced in 2004.

Cowan was an early suspect in Daniel’s disappearance and was first interviewed by police two weeks after the 13-year-old went missing. Officers interviewed him again in 2005.

For an unexplained reason, Cowan changed his name to Shaddo N-Unyah Hunter between 2003 and a 2011 inquest into Daniel’s disappearance, at which he was called to give evidence.

“I had nothing to do with Daniel’s disappearance, nothing at all,” he told the court.

However, shortly after Cowan’s appearance at the inquest he told undercover police officers that he picked Daniel up from a bus stop to “have fun” with him.

He told the officers, who were posing as criminal gang members, that he drove Daniel to a demountable building on a macadamia farm in a secluded bushland area in Beerwah with the intention of molesting him.

He said he invited Daniel in for a drink of water and tried to pull his pants down.

When Daniel said “Oh no” and began to struggle, Cowan said he choked him with his arm around his neck.

Cowan told the officers he disposed of Daniel’s body in an old sand mining area.

Daniel’s bone fragments were later found at the site.

Cowan was arrested and charged with Daniel’s murder in August 2011 and was found guilty in March 2014.


Join us on Facebook