Outcry after Pinkenba Six let off

Wednesday, April 24, 1996

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — The decision to place the "Pinkenba Six" police officers on probation after an internal inquiry into their dumping of three Aboriginal boys at Pinkenba in May 1994 has been denounced by civil libertarians and the Aboriginal community here.

Deputy Police Commissioner Bill Aldrich ordered the six police to go on 12-month probation after an inquiry into police actions in kidnapping the three youths from Fortitude Valley and leaving them to walk home alone without shoes.

The decision to suspend orders for dismissal and impose probation, announced on April 11, led to renewed calls for the police to be sacked.

Queensland Council for Civil Liberties president Ian Dearden said, "In reality, it's nothing more than a slap on the wrists". Aboriginal Legal Service solicitor Ron Finney described the finding as a travesty of justice.

Sam Watson, former ALS administrator, who helped publicise the plight of the youths, said the disciplinary action was appalling and inappropriate.