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- The Family Murders
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The Family Murder's
According to SA police, The
Family, a gang of up to nine
homosexual men, was responsible
for the abduction and rape of up to
200 boys and the murder of five
people during a 10-year reign of
terror between 1973 and '83.
The first person killed was Alan
Barnes, 17, who disappeared on
June 17, 1979, while hitchhiking in
Adelaide. His body, which had been
washed and redressed, was found a
week later on the banks or a
reservoir. An autopsy revealed he
had died of blood loss associated
with severe internal wounds
caused by a blunt object thrust into
The death disgusted Adelaide
but there was worse to come. The
body of Neil Frederick Muir, 25,
was skilfully dismembered into 43
pieces and found in a plastic
bag in Adelaide's Port River on
August 28, 1979.
The final death was that of Richard Kelvin, 15, the son of a
prominent Adelaide newsreader.
A court heard evidence
Bevan Spencer Von Einem had kept the
schoolboy captive in a drugged
state for up to five weeks before
Von Einem, who maintained his
innocence and refused to nominate
anyone else involved in the death.
was sentenced to a then SA record,
36-year non-parole period.
Listing Australian Convicted Paedophiles/ Sex Offenders/ Child Killers..
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SA Police offer $1 million rewards for 13 child murder cases
Police will offer $1 million rewards in a bid to solve 13 of the state’s highest profile cold case child murders.
The rewards will be paid for information leading to an arrest or conviction, or recovery of a body, in the murders
of 18 children dating back to 1966.
It is the first time police have agreed to pay rewards for information which leads to the discovery of victims’ bodies.
Police assistant commissioner Paul Dickson said recent cold case murder arrests proved that cases were never closed until they were solved.
“Over time, relationships and loyalties between people break down and we know that in some cases in these matters there is
a small group of people with vital information that can be provided to the police to assist with those matters being solved,” he said.
“When you are talking about people who may be involved in a criminal group or with people who have
committed the most serious crimes, often they need a bit of inducement to (come forward)
and that’s why the reward of $1 million is a fair inducement.”
The 13 unsolved murder cases are:
THE BEAUMONT CHILDREN - Jane, 9, Arnna, 7, and Grant, 4, disappeared from Glenelg on January 26, 1966.
PATRICIA SCHMIDT - the 16-year-old’s body was found off a dirt track at Hallett Cove on December 18, 1971.
JOANNE RATCLIFFE AND KIRSTE GORDON - Joanne, 11, and Kirste, 4, disappeared from Adelaide Oval on August 25, 1973.
MARILYN QUALMANN - the 14-year-old disappeared from her Moorook home on September 21, 1975.
ALAN BARNES - the 17-year-old’s body was found under the South Para Bridge near Williamstown on June 24, 1979.
PETER STOGNEFF - the 14-year-old’s remains were found at a Two Wells property on June 23, 1982, almost 10
months after he disappeared.
MICHAELA GODAU - the 15-year-old disappeared from her Elizabeth Field (now Davoren Park) home overnight on December 19, 1982.
RICHARD KELVIN - the 15-year-old’s body was found near an airstrip at Kersbrook on July 24, 1983, 19 days after he was abducted
from a North Adelaide laneway. Bevan Spencer von Einem was convicted of his murder, but police believe others were involved.
THE PEARCE FAMILY - the bodies of Meredith Pearce and her three children, Adam, 11, Travis, 9, and Kerry 2, were found in
burnt-out remains of their Parafield Gardens home on January 6, 1991. Police have been searching for the children’s father Stuart Pearce since.
JUAN MORGAN - the 15-year-old disappeared in 1992 and, although he was not reported missing at the time, police
in 1999 identified him as a potential murder victim.
RHIANNA BARREAU - the 12-year-old was last seen at her Morphett Vale home on October 7, 1992.
HEATHER TURNER - the 16-year-old’s body was found partly submerged in a Port Gawler creek on
January 31, 1998, about two weeks after he was last seen.
MELISSA BROWN (aka TRUSSELL) - the 15-year-old was last seen leaving a Blair Athol
address with her mother Rosemary Brown on May 13, 2000. Rosemary Brown’s body was found at Garden Island on July 2, 2000.
Suzie Ratcliffe, whose sister Joanne Ratcliffe disappeared from Adelaide Oval in August 1973, said the rewards were a major incentive.
“If this helps the vital to bringing our girls home or other children then that is all that matters,” she said.
“Living day by day not knowing where our children are is incomprehensible. It is a pain no one should have to endure.
“My family have missed out on seeing my sister grow up, go to school ... getting married and having children of her own.
“Not having a body to bury and actually grieve for her properly ... this reward could mean the answers my family and
so many other families have been waiting for for so long.
“Please find it within your heart to ring Crime Stoppers and put an end to our pain.”
Premier Jay Weatherill said the rewards were designed to attract people with any information to come forward and reveal what they knew.
“Even the smallest piece of information can lead to a chain of inquiry, which can lead to an arrest of the perpetrator or indeed
crucial information that might allow us to understand the final resting place of these children,” he said.
Mr Weatherill pleaded for anyone with information to help “allow us to bring closure” to the families of missing children.
“They deserve justice and they have been deprived of that all of these years,’’ he said.
“If we can do anything that can allow us to bring closure for them or to allow them to at least
understand the final resting place for their children after all these years, that would be an enormous relief for these families.
“I think it would not only be an important relief for the family, but an important sense of relief for the whole South
Australian community if these people could be brought to justice or if we could know just a little more about the final
resting places of these victims.’’
Mr Weatherill said as a father, he could not understand what the parents of the five missing children had endured since they were taken.
“It would have the cruellest and most painful thing imaginable to have your child taken and never quite know
what has happened to them,’’ he said.
“Never really being able to fully grieve for them because you really just don’t know, and as unlikely
as it seems, whether they are still alive. There must be an awful dilemma about just letting go of the idea of them still being alive.’’
The new move also has been welcomed by Kirste’s parents, Greg and Christine, who said they had never given up hope there would one day
be a breakthrough in the case.
“You can’t give up hope. They have got to be somewhere, whether they are
alive or whether they are not, they are somewhere,’’ Mrs Gordon said.
“You can’t give up hope that someday there is going to be an answer.’’
Mr Gordon, 72, said he hoped increasing the reward and extending it to
recovering the remains of the missing children “does have the desired effect’’ while Mrs Gordon,
69, said she wanted to know where Kirste now was.
“I think any parent in the situation we are in, or any parent that doesn’t know
where their loved ones are want that answer,’’ she said.
Mr Gordon said they had dealt with the loss of Kirste by not regarding themselves as victims.
“Right at the very start of things we made our personal decision that we were going to be survivors and not victims,’’ he said.
“We have always adopted that attitude, that we will live our life as survivors. That’s what we have done and we
have got on with things and made sure our family is well supported.’’
Mr Gordon said the family also believed “the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.’’
He said he “frequently’’ thought about Kirste and it was always “just underneath the surface.’’
“For me, it’s often just listening to music at some time. Music is all about emotion and that
can trigger things quite quickly and easily,’’ he said.
Major Crime detectives will be available to take Crime Stoppers calls on these matters today
and tomorrow from 11am to 10pm.
Anyone with any information on the two cases is urged to contact Crimestoppers on 1800333000 or at www.sa.crimestoppers.com.au.
Lost diary gives South Australia police new lead into Alan Barnes murder by The Family (8-2-2014)
"The Family Murders -
Doctor with alleged links to The Family identified as Stephen George Woodards
An interstate doctor with alleged links to the "Family" murders has been ordered to stand trial on sex charges.
Dr Stephen George Woodards, 61, from NSW, right, appeared in the Adelaide Magistrates Court yesterday.
He pleaded not guilty to five counts of unlawful sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 17, and two
counts of indecent assault. Court documents allege the offences occurred between January 1, 1982, and August 29, 1982, at St Peters.
The court has previously heard the alleged victim was a male youth at the time of the offences, but has since changed gender.
Until today, state law has prevented The Advertiser from naming or showing Woodards.
That law which also protects the identity of the MP charged with child pornography offences is set to be reviewed.
The statutory suppression order on his identity lapsed yesterday when Woodards entered his plea.
Yesterday Jeff Munk, for Woodards, asked a new suppression order be placed over his client's identity.
He said publicity may cause the alleged victim to "subconsciously substitute" Woodards into his evidence.
"The prosecution case will be that the complainant and accused had little, if any, prior knowledge of each other before the alleged incident," he said.
"The offences allegedly occurred when the parties were alone in a room together ... (the other man's) name was given to the
complainant, but up to four years after the event."
It has previously been claimed Woodards has links to the so-called "Family" murders in the 1980s. Mr Munk said
publication of that allegation might prejudice his client's trial.
"This matter has been reported in the past in association with a group known in this state as the 'Family'.
These allegations, for which he is now being committed to stand trial, have nothing to do with other crimes
said to be committed by these individuals in the 'Family'," he said.
"There is a significant prospect that a jury would be prejudiced as far as these current matters are concerned."
Chief Magistrate Liz Bolton refused the application, and remanded Woodards on continuing bail to face the District Court next month.
Doctor allegedly linked to Family murders
A FORMER Adelaide man has been arrested and charged with sex crimes allegedly linked to
the notorious "Family murders".
The man was charged with five counts of rape, which allegedly occurred in the 1980s.
He is now based in Sydney and he was arrested by NSW police officers last month after a warrant was issued.
He is expected to remain in Sydney before he appears in court in Adelaide in a fortnight.
Channel 9 reported the man was a doctor with links to suspects in the "Family murders".
That was the name given to the murders of Richard Kelvin, Mark Langley, Alan Barnes, Neil Muir and Peter Stogneff, who died between 1979 and 1983. The five deaths are linked to a group of homosexuals who preyed on young men, picking them up, drugging them and sexually abusing them.
Only one member of the group, Bevan Spencer von Einem, has been brought to justice. He is serving a life sentence for the murder of Richard Kelvin.
Detectives completed a cold-case review of the murders late last year but no new charges were laid then.
Family murder truth may never be known
THE 30-year-old Family murders are destined to remain unresolved, with a major
cold-case review failing to unearth any new evidence.
Without any convincing new evidence, the three long-standing and key suspects - and
the already convicted murderer Bevan Spencer von Einem - will not be charged.
The decision comes after more than 18 months of renewed investigations and protracted
forensic examinations into the murders of the five young males between 1979 and 1983.
While detectives have concluded their inquiries, final forensic tests on a number of
exhibits in the case that could provide evidence against a number of the suspects is yet to be completed - but forensic officers are not confident they will be positive.
Major Crime officer-in-charge, detective Superintendent Grant Moyle, said the results of the forensic testing may result in further investigations being conducted and would determine "if there is any evidence to take action against any individual".
"(But) I have not received any further information that would allow us to take these matters forward at this stage," he said.
The review of the Family murders was the largest cold-case review conducted by Major Crime detectives with all witnesses reinterviewed, DNA swabs taken from the four suspects and their associates and dozens of exhibits re-examined at the Forensic Science Centre.
It examined the murders of Richard Kelvin, Mark Langley, Alan Barnes, Neil Muir and Peter Stogneff who were killed between 1979 and 1983. The five deaths have been linked to a close-knit group of homosexuals who preyed on young men by picking them up, drugging them and sexually abusing them.
Only one member of the group, Bevan Spencer von Einem, has been brought to justice. He is serving a life sentence for the murder of Richard Kelvin. Although his 24-year non-parole period expired last November, he has not yet applied for release.
It is understood several detectives who worked on the review believed there was enough evidence to put von Einem and another suspect, an eastern suburbs businessman, on trial for one of the unsolved murders, but this view was not shared by senior officers.
Supt Moyle said a "cautious approach" needed to be taken when assessing the available evidence before launching any prosecution because the "the outcome is definitive".
"I am certain if there was enough evidence action would have been taken in the past," he said.
A $1 million reward and immunity from prosecution are available for anyone who provides information that leads to a conviction in the murders.
"I would hope the reward would be an incentive for some people to come forward. I certainly feel there are a lot of people who do know a lot more about what happened to these victims than have come forward," Supt Moyle said.
"It is never too late for them to come forward and I don't think anyone involved in this should ever sleep easy.
"No one should think these cases are forgotten. They are not.
"It is never too late for someone to come forward with information regarding them. We will follow it up."
Alan Barnes' brother, Charlie, echoed his remarks, stating he believed that those responsible would one day be held accountable.
"I would like them to shed the guilt and remorse they must be carrying around and come forward and bring this to a conclusion," he said.
"I know the police are like bulldogs and will not let go of this. They may well tap you on the shoulder one day.
"I am over wanting revenge for what happened to Alan, I just want to see justice prevail one day."
Sunday Mail (5-12-2010)
Focus on three key suspects
BEVAN Spencer von Einem is the only man convicted of committing any of the Family murders but three others have long been prime targets of the police investigation.
BEVAN SPENCER VON EINEM
Convicted of the murder of Richard Kelvin in 1984. Police have evidence he was with Alan Barnes after he was abducted and drugged. He was one of the last people seen with Neil Muir. Currently serving a life sentence in Port Augusta prison.
#1. Eastern suburbs businessman. Visited von Einem after his 1984 conviction. Interviewed in late 1983 and denied involvement in the Kelvin murder.
Has also denied knowledge of the other murders, despite an informant telling police he saw him with von Einem and an unconscious Alan Barnes on the night Barnes was abducted in June 1979. Refused to answer questions when approached as part of the cold case review.
#2. Former Adelaide doctor who is well known in gay circles. Former lover of a well-known Adelaide lawyer. The pair used to pick up, drug and abuse young men. Known to have supplied drugs to von Einem and suspect 1 which were used to incapacitate hitch-hikers. Lives in Sydney and refused to answer questions as part of the cold case review.
#3. Former male prostitute who is a close friend of von Einem and suspect 1. Police have considerable information that implicates him in picking up, drugging and sexually abusing hitch-hikers. Believed to have been with von Einem and suspect 1 when Kelvin was abducted, but has denied this. Now a bus driver in Brisbane, he fled Adelaide shortly after the cold case review was launched.
Sunday Mail (5-12-2010)
Family Murders Were 'About Snuff Movies'
THE Supreme Court has heard claims that Adelaide's notorious Family murders "were really about making snuff movies".
Anti-child abuse campaigner Malcolm Barry Standfield allegedly made the "snuff movie" claims
in 2004, during a private conversation with South Australian Premier Mike Rann's now chief
of staff Nick Alexandrides.
Standfield, 67, and fellow campaigner Wendy Utting, 39, have both denied criminally defaming
two politicians and two senior police officers by claiming they were pedophiles.
"(Standfield) told me that over the weekend he had been somewhere at Wingfield, he said,
and that he was speaking to a bloke, as he called him, who had given him information," Mr Alexandrides said.
"(The man) had told him that the so-called Family murders . . . were really about making snuff movies."
The "Family murders" centre on the deaths of five teenagers in Adelaide in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Two of the men named as pedophiles in a fax allegedly sent by Utting and Standfield in
April 2005 briefly testified in court yesterday afternoon.
A serving MP said he had "absolutely not" been involved in any kind of
pedophile activity and denied ever using an alias.
A senior police officer vehemently denied knowing or having a sexual
encounter with sex abuse informant Shaine Moore - who was found dead at his Kilburn home in 2005.
The trial before Justice Ann Vanstone continues.
The Adelaide Advertiser (21-11-2008)
Reward in Family murder cases doubled to $1 million
Peter Stogneff(main image)
(clockwise from top left) Richard Kelvin, Neil Muir, Alan Barnes and Mark Langley.
THE reward in relation to the so-called Family murders has been doubled to $1 million in
a bid to flush out new information in the cases which date back to the 1970s.
South Australian Premier Mike Rann said the murders of five young men were some of the most
violent unsolved crimes in the state's history.
"This crime, this evil that was inflicted on these young people has had a massive adverse
impact on the lives of their families and friends ever since," Mr Rann said.
"It is a scar on our history. Most of us cannot think of crimes worse than the torture and
murder perpetrated on these young innocent victims."
The killings of Alan Barnes, Neil Muir, Mark Langley, Peter Stogneff and Richard Kelvin date
back to the period between 1979 and 1983.
Only one man has ever been convicted in relation to the deaths with Bevan Spencer von Einem
serving a life sentence, but only in relation to the murder of 15-year-old Richard Kelvin in 1983.
The killings were dubbed the Family murders because of suggestions a group of closely-connected,
high-profile men were involved.
Police have since revealed they have four suspects in the case, but have refused to disclose their identities.
"Most South Australian believe that von Einem had accomplices," Mr Rann said.
"There are people out there in the community who can come forward with information."
As well as increasing the reward for the Family murders, the Government has also doubled to $200,000
the reward for a string of other unsolved crimes, including the disappearance of the three Beaumont children in 1966.
Rann's Family Pledge
PREMIER Mike Rann would increase the reward to solve the notorious Family sex murders if Police
Commissioner Mal Hyde asked him to do so.
Mr Rann today said Mr Hyde had not yet asked him to increase the existing $500,000 reward, but he
would "totally support" him if he did so.
It was revealed in the Sunday Mail today that senior police are in the final stages of drafting a
request to the State Government to post a reward of up to $5 million to help solve the notorious
Family sex murders.
The reward revelation comes a week after Major Crime Investigation Section detectives questioned
convicted killer Bevan Spencer von Einem over the unsolved murders.
It is understood police may ask the Government to post a reward of $1 million for each of the five
Family murders - those of Richard Kelvin, 15, Mark Langley, 18, Alan Barnes, 16, Neil Muir, 25, and
Peter Stogneff, 14.
"I haven't heard from the Police Commissioner, but if the Police Commissioner comes to me in the next
week or so and says we want to increase the level of reward, he is an extremely responsible person
and we will back him," Mr Rann said.
"It would be silly for me to pre-empt what he is going to say on the basis of a figure named in the
newspaper from an unnamed source, but if the Police Commissioner believes that upping the reward
would help lead to the arrest, prosecution and successful conviction of those who are involved in
the worst, vilest, most evil killings in the history of Australia then it is money well spent.
"We would totally support whatever the police commissioner comes to me to ask."
Von Einem, 61, is the currently the only member of the Family to face justice. He is serving a life
sentence with a 24-year non-parole period for the murder of Richard Kelvin in 1983.
$5m Reward Bid to Solve Family Murders
POLICE are set to ask the State Government to post a reward of up to $5 million to help solve the
notorious Family sex murders.
The Sunday Mail understands senior police are in the final stages of drafting a request for the
reward, which would be the biggest in SA history. They believe increasing the reward from the
current $500,000 could prove a vital component in prompting a breakthrough in the long-running cases.
Detectives conducting a cold-case review of the murders believe many people with information have
chosen to remain silent.
It is understood the review has uncovered new evidence implicating a number of key suspects, but
police are seeking to exhaust all avenues of inquiry in the five murders before making a decision
on whether any person should be charged.
The reward revelation comes a week after Major Crime Investigation Section detectives questioned
convicted killer Bevan Spencer von Einem over the unsolved murders.
Major Crime officer-in-charge Detective Superintendent John Venditto yesterday would not comment
directly on the reward amount, but when asked if the existing $500,000 reward was adequate, he replied: "no".
"Given the progress that has been made to date and that
the review relates to the investigation of five unsolved murders, it is logical that we would review
the amount of reward offered against contemporary standards," he said.
The highest reward to solve a murder in South Australia at present is for information leading to a
conviction in the 1994 National Crime Authority bombing that killed WA police officer Geoffrey Bowen.
That reward – $1 million – was posted in May following an exhaustive review of the NCA bombing case
file by senior detectives that failed to find any new evidence against prime suspect Domenic Perre
or any other persons.
It is understood police may ask the Government to match that reward for each of the five Family
murders – those of Richard Kelvin, 15, Mark Langley, 18, Alan Barnes, 16, Neil Muir, 25, and Peter
Von Einem, 61, is the only member of the Family to face justice – he is serving a life sentence
with a 24-year non-parole period for the murder of Richard Kelvin in 1983.
Det-Supt Venditto has revealed the review had identified four key suspects and that inquiries were
concentrating on them and their past and present associates.
In March, the Sunday Mail revealed that key suspects in the murders were being DNA-tested as part
of the renewed investigations. The review has targeted up to a dozen people – the key suspects and
associates of them, and von Einem.
One of the major targets is an eastern suburbs businessman aged in his 60s.
He was von Einem's closest associate when the murders occurred between 1979 and 1983.
Another target, a former Adelaide doctor, is living in Sydney. Detectives have travelled to Sydney
to both interview and obtain a DNA profile from him.
Another key suspect has shifted to Queensland, with detectives a fortnight ago interviewing him and
obtaining a DNA sample from him. The Family murders review is the largest conducted by Major Crime's
cold case team. It has so far reviewed 1000 statements with 1800 lines of inquiry identified.
A dozen detectives assigned to the review have interviewed and re-interviewed dozens of people and
taken DNA samples from an unknown number of them.
The detectives have also submitted a number of exhibits to Forensic Science SA for re-testing using
new technology, and a number have been sent for first-time testing.
The exhibits include clothing worn by the victims, clothing seized from suspects at the time of the
murders and other objects seized from the homes of suspects.
Anyone with any information on the Family murders is urged to contact BankSA
Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000.
Police have assured those with information that their safety fears will be addressed and any
information provided in confidence.
Sunday Mail (26-10-2008)
DNA tests for Family murder suspects
Key suspects in Adelaide's notorious Family murders are being DNA tested as part of a new inquiry into the sex killings.
The Sunday Mail understands Major Crime Investigation Section detectives started taking DNA samples from the suspects this week.
Recent changes to DNA laws give police the power to take samples from suspects in major indictable offences. The testing is part
of a major review of the Family case file and the first move to apprehend others believed to be involved.
It is believed the new inquiry is targeting up to a dozen people - three key offenders and the remainder associates of
those three and Bevan Spencer von Einem.
The review, led by Major Crime officer-in-charge Detective Superintendent John Venditto, is understood to involve
12 Major Crime detectives, including six members of the cold case review team.
Det Supt Venditto was responsible for the investigation of historical sex offences referred to SAPOL by the Mullighan inquiry between April 2006 and last November.
Von Einem, 61, is the only Family member to face justice - he is serving a life sentence with a 24-year non-parole period for the murder of Richard Kelvin, 15, in 1983. Four other murders - those of Mark Langley, 18, Alan Barnes, 17, Neil Muir, 25, and Peter Stogneff, 14, - have also been linked to the Family.
In 1989, von Einem was also charged with murdering Barnes and Langley, but the charges were later withdrawn when crucial similar fact evidence was ruled inadmissible.
That evidence included testimony by numerous men that von Einem and others had picked them up, drugged and sexually abused them. Their testimony was backed by several associates of von Einem, who gave corroborating evidence - and implicated others.
Confirming the new inquiries into the five murders yesterday, Det. Supt Venditto said police did not recognise the term "The Family".
"This is not a legitimate group of people, as that label suggests," he said. "They should not be given any title that infers legitimacy. These people have no such bond, only an association that with time probably no longer exists."
Major Crime Operations Inspector Doug Barr yesterday said detectives were "keeping an open mind" and treating the five cases as individual murder investigations, rather than one inquiry.
"There are similarities between some of the crimes, but there are also dissimilarities," he said.
Insp Barr said police were hopeful of receiving assistance from those with knowledge of the murders and the wider community as the new inquiry, which was launched late last year, unfolded.
"Community attitudes have changed towards historical sex offences," he said.
"There have been a significant number of historical cases that have been successfully prosecuted because both victims and witnesses have come forward now.
"The public are reminded there is a $500,000 reward available for anyone who provides information leading to a conviction in these matters".
Insp. Barr stressed anyone who provided information would be assured of confidentiality and any fears for their safety addressed.
The DNA testing is being done because recent changes to the Forensic Procedures Act allow police to take samples from suspects in major indictable offences.
The DNA samples will be compared to forensic evidence obtained in four of the five murder cases.
The Sunday Mail understands one of the major targets is an eastern-suburbs businessman in his 60s. The man, whose identity is suppressed, was von Einem's closest associate when the murders occurred between 1979 and 1983.
He is the most senior member of the Family - besides von Einem - and has never faced any charges over the murders. At the time of the murders, he was living with a man who is also a person of interest in the new police investigation.
Many of those being targeted now were interviewed by detectives during the Kelvin inquiry in 1983 and others were scrutinised in the late 1980s prior to the Barnes and Langley murder charges being laid.
It is known the businessman was first interviewed by Major Crime detectives during the Kelvin murder inquiry in 1983. He told detectives then he was not involved in the murders, but he did frequent gay beats and picked hitchikers up. His lawyer in that interview is now a senior legal figure.
During the Kelvin inquiry, detectives also raided the businessman's home and office. At his office, on a busy arterial road, they discovered an upstairs room that contained only a mattress on the floor. It was seized for forensic testing.
In 1989, a key witness - one of von Einem's former close associates - provided detectives with a statement alleging the businessman met von Einem after Alan Barnes had been picked up and drugged.
The witness said after von Einem and he had picked Barnes up, von Einem stopped and rang the businessman from a telephone box on Main North Rd. They then drove to the "Number One" gay beat at Jolly's Boathouse, opposite the Torrens Parade Ground.
Once there - with an unconscious Barnes in the vehicle - they met the businessman and von Einem chatted with him for a short time.
The witness claims von Einem had then asked him if he wanted "to watch him do some surgery on this guy". The witness, who died in Sydney several years ago, said he did not go with the pair because he did not like the businessman.
Rann Says Von Einem Should Die In Jail
CONVICTED serial killer
Bevan Spencer von Einem will never be released if
Premier Mike Rann has his way.
He has asked Attorney-General Michael
Atkinson to examine ways of keeping von
Einem "in Jail for good".
"I believe he should die in prison," Mr
Rann told The Advertiser yesterday.
"I think there would be justifiable community outrage if von Einem was released.
"... he will probably go down in infamy
as South Australia's most hated man for
the dreadful crimes he has committed."
Von Einem, 59, is eligible for parole in
November, 2008. He is serving life with a
24-year non-parole period for murdering
teenager Richard Kelvin in 1983.
It is understood the Government will
examine two options - rejecting parole if
it is recommended by the Parole Board
or introducing special laws to ensure he
stays in jail - as has been done in Britain.
Questions were raised in State Parliament on Wednesday about special treatment for
the killer including claims by an
anonymous prisoner that von Einem had
"celebrity status" in Yatala prison, had
sexual relations With another prisoner
and had items smuggled into him.
The Government said yesterday von
Einem was afforded no special privileges,
could not access the internet, was not
considered a celebrity and that there was
no evidence of rape or sexual abuse.
Correctional Services Minister Terry
Roberts said a prison officer had been
disciplined over the matter of an unauthorised item of clothing - an apron -
being brought into prison for von Einem.
Opposition justice spokesman Robert
Lawson said Mr Rann's plan to keep von
Einem in jail was a toejerk response "to
revelations that his government has failed
to run an effective prison system".
Adelaide Advertiser (10-11-2004)
Greg Kelton/ Bryan littlely
One Problem That Won't Go Away For Rann- Von Einem
MIKE Rann must have felt at least
a cold twinge of anxiety this week
over allegations that the man
convicted of utterly contemptible crimes,
Bevan Spencer von Einem, has been receiving
preferential treatment in Yatala prison.
As the leader of a government constantly
trumpeting its supposedly tough stance on
crime, one of the things the Premier would
least want to have to confront is a revelation
that the state's most detested convicted
murderer is being given carte blanche to
queen it over his fellow inmates and captors.
Particularly given Mr Rann is likely to have
to decide inside the next three years - when
von Einem becomes eligible for conditional
release - whether to stage another of his
controversial interventions with the Parole
Board and especially when so many usually
well-informed citizens of this state remain
convinced that, while von Einem was correctly adjudged to be guilty of the appallingly
inhumane crime for which he was sentenced
to life in jail, he had not been acting alone.
Rightly or wrongly, the suspicion not only
remains but has become enhanced in many
quarters that a massive coverup was successfully achieved at the time. And that von
Einem took the rap to protect associates who
included some of toe state's most influential
judicial and political identities.
Speculation that the real and entire facts
would one day emerge - and that the identity
of all the culprits and their further activities
would eventually be revealed - has
heightened in recent times following the
death of von Einem's mother and of other
people often linked by rumour to the activities of the so-termed Family.
All of which makes it easier to believe that
people with power might deem it advisable
to ensure von Einem's Yatala tenancy is made
as comfortable as he would want it to be.
Far and away the biggest problem surrounding
this weeks allegations is that they
have been introduced by a fellow prisoner
who may well have his own devious reasons
for making them - reasons which could
involve everything from jealousy and hatred
to political opportunism.
That aside, having read a copy of his
manuscript - albeit with names, signature
and other identifying material omitted - we
find it to be a reasonably convincing, detailed
and persuasive document. Uncommonly so
in fact, given the literary skill of your average
What intrigues most is the contention that
von Einem is planning a High Court challenge
in an attempt to overturn his conviction. And
that he will be citing allegations of police
corruption at the time of his original arrest,
together with fresh evidence he feels-able to
proffer in mitigation since his mother's death.
Such a possibility would undoubtedly be
welcomed, even assisted, by those who subscribe to the theory that widespread
conspiracy was involved not just in the Kelvin
murder but others for which no person has
yet been charged.
Whether it eventuates remains to be seen.
As does the Government's course of action
in response to the prisoner's assertions, as
tabled in Parliament, that von Einem has
unrestricted movement within the entire
protective custody unit, regularly preys on
other prisoners, pampers those he intends to
seduce with gifts and the promise of thousands of dollars, and has a status "amongst
all staff and prisoners which can only be
compared to that of a celebrity".
Those are damning and infuriating allegations which, if proved correct, could well
trigger the sort of recriminations which, in
time, might also unlock some horrible
secrets. We hope so.
Adelaide Advertiser (11-11-2004)
'Lies' Claim In Von Einem Appeal
EVIDENCE in the case of
so-called "Family" killer
Bevan Spencer Von Einem
may have been deliberately
suppressed by police, it was
Defence lawyers have also
asked the Full Court of the
Supreme Court to find that
the Attorney-General, Mr
Griffin, lied in an affidavit
about the action he took in
relation to Von Einem's petition for mercy.
Von Einem is serving a
24-year non-parole period for
the 1983 abduction and murder of Richard Kelvin, 15, the
son of Channel 9 newsreader
Von Einem attended court
yesterday for the judicial review of advice formed by the
Attorney-General on the basis
of a report from the Solicitor-
General, which resulted in the
Governor rejecting Von
Einem's petition for mercy
But counsel for Von Einem,
Mr Michael Abbott, QC, told
the court yesterday that Mr
Griffin was obliged to also
consider his own powers to
refer the matter back to the
Mr Abbott said there was no
indication in any correspondence, nor any ministerial
note, that Mr Griffin had considered that option.
However, in Mr Griffin's affidavit - on which the court
refused permission for him to
be cross-examined - he said
he had considered and rejected the idea.
The Solicitor-General, Mr
Brad Selway, QC, yesterday
described as "bizarre" the
suggestion that the statement was a lie and urged the
court to believe Mr Griffin's
Mr Abbott also told the
court that fresh evidence
which had been the subject of
the petition might not only
have supported Von Einem's
testimony but provided him
with an alibi.
One witness, Edward
Sincock, told police he had
seen Kelvin in Rundle Mall
after the time he was said to
have been abducted. The advice to the Attorney-General
had been that Sincock was
"notoriously unreliable" and a
However, Mr Abbott said
Sincock's "predilection for
young boys" would have made
him more reliable as, on his
own statement, he paid particular attention to the youth
he saw in the mall that night.
Mr Abbott also said there
were two other statements
which had only recently come
to light from witnesses with
similar accounts, which in the
very least supported
Apart from the abduction
evidence, Mr Abbott said
documents discovered recently showed the date of
death could have been later
than originally thought.
This could mean that Von
Einem was under heavy police
surveillance at the time
Kelvin died, he said.
Mr Abbott said that even
the Solicitor-General had
criticised the fact that this
evidence had not been made
available by police before the
trial and recommended the
matter be brought to the attention of the police commissioner.
He said the admission that
this evidence might have been
amounted to a miscarriage of
justice and demanded action
from either the Governor or
Mr Abbott said it was not
necessary to prove the evidence could have resulted in
an acquittal, but the matter
should be revisited to uphold-
the principles of procedural
fairness and natural Justice.
The court reserved its decision.
Adelaide Advertiser (9-9-1998)
The Paedophile Witness
Key figure in Von Einem's freedom bid identified
THE key witness in the bid
to reopen the Von Einem
case is a convicted
paedophile and "notoriously unreliable", according
to documents filed with the
Supreme Court by the Solicitor General.
The witness cannot be
But he is central to the
attempt by Bevan Spencer
Von Einem to reopen the case
in which he was convicted in
1984 of the murder of 15-year-old Richard Kelvin.
In February this year, the
Governor, Sir Eric Neal, acted
on the advice of the State
Government to reject a petition by Von Einem to reopen
the case. Von Einem is now
applying to have that decision reviewed.
The evidence of the witness
is claimed to support Von
Einem's defence case at trial,
where he said he had dropped
Kelvin off in the city in the
evening of June 5, 1983.
The witness gave a statement to police in 1983 that he
had seen a youth matching
Kelvin's description in
Rundle Mall that evening.
Solicitor-General Mr Brad
Selway, QC, in a document
filed with the court, says the
fact the witness is "notoriously unreliable" is probably
why the statement was withheld from the defence.
He says the witness was
either mistaken or lying, and
the only reason the statement
could have been of any use to
Von Einem is that it could
have enabled him to "invent
a different lie" to match exactly the witness's story.
Another document, filed in
support of the Solicitor-General's report, says the witness may have been an associate
of Von Einem's who
provided a "set-up or fabrication" and that his own history was questionable.
"There was information
that he may have been arrested for an abduction in
Melbourne," the document
"And there was an anonymous telephone call by someone about the whereabouts of
the victim which was believed
to be falsely reported by (the
In his report to the
Solicitor-General, also on file,
the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr Paul Rofe, QC,
says the witness is a convicted paedophile.
Further investigations by
The Advertiser have revealed
the witness was convicted of
seven child sex offences in the
1980s. The last four were committed while he was on parole
for the first three.
He was also questioned before
sentencing about the so-called "Family" killings but
investigators said he provided no new information.
The Solicitor-General will
argue for the Von Einem application to be struck out
when it again goes before
Justice Duggan next month.
Adelaide Advertiser (13-5-1998)
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