Thursday, May 1, 2003

Killer freed without support?

It was alleged she was abducted, raped and tortured by her estranged husband. When he was freed on bail.

The question is did he have any support or counselling? In a crisis situation in relation to domestic violence most people need support. Trish van Koeverden knew he was going to kill her. It was only a matter of time before Trish van Koeverden was going to die.

Her estranged husband Tony Bardakos, who had been charged with her abduction, rape and torture, had been freed on bail [by whom?] "She just hoped she didn't see it coming," her mother Dawn van Koeverden said yesterday. "She told the police that she did a stupid thing letting him into her life but didn't want to die because of it."

It took 14 days for Bardakos to find her and gun her down on Tuesday afternoon. Bardakos, 48, had a lengthy record for violence dating back to 1974, including a previous conviction for the abduction of an ex-wife.

But he was granted conditional bail, [by whom?] despite strong concerns being raised for Trish van Koeverden's safety.

The evidence was [allegedly] clear. Bardakos had repeatedly threatened Ms van Koeverden and her family after their relationship soured in early March.

As part of his conditional bail, he was prohibited from approaching his wife or going within 30km of her parents' home in Lake Macquarie [by whom?]

On Tuesday, 41-year-old Ms van Koeverden, a midwife, was en route to her solicitor's office when Bardakos pulled in front of her in Cameron St in the Newcastle suburb of Hamilton, at 3.40pm.

In the minutes that followed, Bardakos dragged her from her car and knocked her to the ground with the butt of a rifle.

The mother-of-two begged for her life but Bardakos had no intention of sparing her. He shot her twice at point-blank range with a bolt-action shotgun and a rifle. About an hour later, police found Bardakos dead from self-inflicted gunshot wounds in his car in the nearby suburb of Mayfield.

"Trish knew he was going to kill her," Mrs van Koeverden said. "We can't understand why they let him out.

"We knew he was a violent man. There was no way we could protect Trish." Ms van Koeverden's family, friends, police and prosecutors are outraged that Bardakos was given bail [by whom?]

A senior prosecutor involved in one of the bail applications is believed to have become physically sick when told of Ms van Koeverden's death yesterday. The Crown had argued that Bardakos would harm or threaten to harm Ms van Koeverden if he were released. Mrs van Koeverden said Trish knew her life was in danger the moment she learned Bardakos has been released on bail [by whom?]

Shadow Attorney-General Andrew Tink yesterday said the case highlighted the pressing on-going need to reform the bail system for repeat offenders. "I will be introducing a private members Bill today to tighten the laws and take away the presumption of bail for repeat offenders," Mr Tink said.

A spokesperson for Justice Action Mr Brett Collins said, "Tink's proposal to lock more people up will cause more murder and make society more dangerous."

"Crime including murder is the result of many factors all due to being human and wider pressures on individuals to increase the pressure on some people by barbaric conditions can only make them more anti-social and dangerous." He said.

By Coun Selling May 1 03

Why blame existing laws? The magistrate whoever that was? Why wasn't the magistrate named? Granted bail in the domestic violence case when he/she had Bardakos's previous history and the current alleged offences in front of him/her. Instead of admissions that the magistrate should have used common sense and made a mistake by not holding him in custody and offering him some social support, the ruling class argue for tighter restrictions on bail laws, for the whole community.Why is that?

Abolition of 800 year old double jeopardy law a crime

The 800-year-old rule prevents a person who's acquitted of a criminal charge from ever being re-tried for that offense.


Roseanne Catt Inquiry: Roseanne Catt's presentation:'Daily Terror'
We are most concerned about articles that have appeared in the Daily Telegraph on Saturday, February 8, 2003, page 13. The article was written by Peter Lalor and again on Sunday 9 March 2003 written by Warren Owens.