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Calls for retrial in unsolved murder

THERE are renewed calls for a retrial in the unsolved murders of three Aboriginal children, including a teenager from Tenterfield more than 20 years ago, after a NSW parliamentary committee recommended laws be reveiwed so the case can be re-examined.
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Colleen Walker, 16, Clinton Speedy-Duroux, 16, from Tenterfield, and Evelyn Greenup, 4, disappeared from the Bowraville community on the NSW North Coast over five months between 1990 to 1991.

In 1991, local man Jay Hart was charged with the murder of Clinton and Evelyn, but was acquitted of murdering Clinton in 1994.

Shortly afterwards prosecutors also dropped the charges relating to Evelyn.

After an inquest into her death in 2004, Mr Hart was once more charged with Evelyn’s murder and again acquitted.

A NSW parliamentary inquiry into the murders called on the state government this week to look at clarifying laws to allow a retrial to be held.

Clinton’s family, including relatives from Tenterfield, were in parliament yesterday, along with the families of the other victims, for the tabling of the inquiry’s report.

Committee chairman and Liberal MP David Clarke said he hoped the recommendations would bring the families one step closer tojustice.

“We formally acknowledged the pain and suffering experienced by the families of the three children over the past 23 years,” he told the NSW parliament.

“A pain and suffering that has been significantly contributed to by failings identified in our report.”

An emotional Greens MP David Shoebridge said a key recommendation was having the three murder cases trialled together.

He said it was apparent to him through the inquiry that the families felt they had been ignored.

“That they had been treatedas second-rate citizens,” he toldparliament.

The committee also recommended NSW Police review all ofits policies relating to Aboriginalpeople.

Guyra-based Liberal MP Scot MacDonald said it was impossible to escape the conclusion that if the murders happened on Sydney’s north shore the response would have been better.

“I have no doubt the absent children will be grieved for many days and many nights,” he said.

Mr MacDonald criticised theinitial investigation and judicial response.

The committee also recommended any new application for a retrial of the murders be considered by an independent assessor, such as a retired judge or prosecutor from another jurisdiction.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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