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Your views: on SA border openings, Fumbles, Olympic Dam and historic legal cases

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on SA reopening to some states, InDaily’s footy column and a mine expansion, while a former Attorney-General takes aim at some legal commentary.

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Commenting on the story: SA throws borders open to WA, NT and Tasmanian arrivals

It is difficult to accept that our Government has made the decisions that you have reported.

What is the point in opening our borders to the other States when they don’t reciprocate?

Western Australians can travel to South Australia but we can’t travel to WA – what a great deal for South Australians!

There are no benefits for South Australians, unless we want to travel to NSW and Victoria, where almost all of the new ‘viruses’ are occurring? Roy Trotman

Lets organize a travel bubble with NZ.

They have no virus and neither do we, and it would be great for both NZ and SA economies, even if there were only 2-3 flights a week between Auckland and Adelaide. – Donna Klocke

Surely the SA government is jesting.

Why would you have a one-way situation where persons from these States can come here if they wish?

Even if they do come, would they not be subject to quarantine when they return? It seems like some weird gambit more suited to a poker game than real life.

The government already has a record of dumb decisions in their brief administration of the State and it seems there is another one to add to their growing list. Denis Prodea

Commenting on the story: Touch Of The Fumbles: The Monkey’s Paw

I think the humour was lost on some people. And I’m a Power supporter.

An entertaining writer, but he lost credibility when he said the Power are the most annoying team in the comp. Surely that must be Collingwood. – Trish Johnson

I missed o’erlong the Fumbles’ wit. However, in all compassion, I do not wish weekly doses on him.

Perhaps he could touch base in around ten weeks without recourse to therapy?

I am sure Mr. Reid traumatised him with his blunt incisive analysis. O brave new Crows, that has such people among them. – Craig Delaney

Commenting on the story: Olympic Dam expansion on fast track

Poor old BHP. My  heart bleeds! The so-called “Big Australian” (about 70% owned by overseas interests), is so poor that it’s had to get exemptions from just about every regulation that matters.

The SA Roxby Downs Indenture Act legislation allows the mine to operate with wide-ranging exemptions from the Aboriginal Heritage Protection Act, the Environment Protection Act, the Natural Resources Act, and the Freedom of Information Act.  There are constant problems with tailings such as ongoing seepage and large numbers of bird deaths.  

Probably  worst of all,  BHP plans to increase extraction of precious Great Artesian Basin water to an average 50 million litres per day for the next 25 years, with likely serious adverse impacts on the unique and fragile Mound Springs ‒ which are listed as an Endangered Ecological Community and are of significant cultural importance to Aboriginal people.

BHP plans to  to increase extraction of Great Artesian Basin fossil water “up to total maximum 50 million litres a day annual average” (above the volumes last assessed in 1997 and set at a max of 42 Ml/day) and give BHP rights to take GAB water – potentially up to 2070.

Mining industries are becoming increasingly mechanised and automated. If Scott Morrison were serious about promoting jobs, he’d be giving support to the service industries. But then, that would mean more jobs for women, and of course, Australia needs more “real’ jobs, blokey jobs. Noel Wauchope

Commenting on the Sponsored story, Unmaking of a murder: Legal campaigners continue to fight

An article written by Bill Condie and published in InDaily under the heading “Unmaking of a murder: legal campaigners continue to fight,” has been drawn to my attention.

It was published by InDaily on 13 November, 2019. The article was what is euphemistically known as Sponsored Content, or, in other words, an advertorial – an advertisement formatted to look like editorial chosen on conventional news criteria but, in fact, an advertisement. To InDaily’s credit, it was labelled “Sponsored Content” so readers were warned.

The article is about two people at Flinders University who campaign for historical convictions to be overturned at appeal hearings where it is argued, under a 2013 law, that there is compelling new evidence that indicates a substantial miscarriage of justice has occurred. The article is angled on Derek Bromley, convicted of murder in the 1980s. It reads:

“In SA, Derek Bromley is now 13 years past the expiry of his non parole period because he maintains that he is innocent of the crime for which he has been convicted, say Flinders University researchers Associate Professor Bibi Sangha and Dr Robert Moles, who head the long running Miscarriage of Justice Project.” The imputation of the narrative about Derek Bromley is, in the context, that he is a person to whom the 2013 law should apply and that his case ought to be considered under it.

What is left out of the article is that Mr Bromley applied under the 2013 law and his case was heard by the Full Court of the Supreme Court. The outcome is reported in R. v. Bromley [2018] SASCFC 41. The Full Court made a unanimous decision that “The new psychiatric and new psychological evidence, considered separately or as a whole, does not satisfy the requirement that the evidence be ‘compelling’ as it is not ‘highly probative in the context of the issues in dispute at the trial of the offence.’ …applicant has not demonstrated that a substantial miscarriage of justice has occurred.”

Why omit this relevant fact ?

Mr Condie’s article continues:

“The case that started it all was that of Henry Keogh, a banker jailed erroneously for 26 years in 1994 for the murder of his fiancée. Keogh spent 21 years behind bars before walking free in 2015, receiving $2.57 million in compensation from the government.”

The phrase “jailed erroneously” is strictly true but not a fair summary of what the Full Court decided in Keogh case in 2014.

This ruling of the Full Supreme Court in the Keogh case was left out of the article:

“The task of the jury involved consideration of all the circumstances of the case, including the fact that a young and apparently healthy women died suddenly while taking a bath in circumstances where Keogh may have had a motive to murder her and had the opportunity to do so on the night of her death…We do not accept the submission made by Keogh’s counsel that there should be a direction of an acquittal. To the contrary, we consider that the non expert circumstantial evidence, when considered with the forensic pathology evidence as now understood, is such that it would remain open to a properly directed jury to convict…Our review of the material does not establish a case for an acquittal following an appeal. We direct that Henry Vincent Keogh be retried.”

The Director of Public Prosecutions was unable to retry the case because a key witness was afflicted with dementia.

For the future, I think subeditors ought to treat advertorials with the same wariness as they treat editorial, and check the public record, rather than wave them through like advertisements. – Michael Atkinson, Attorney-General 2002/2010

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