Daily News Roundup

December 5, 2018

Wednesday, December 5

Chris Dawson, the former husband of missing Sydney woman Lynette Dawson, at the centre of a popular podcast called Teacher’s Pet,  was arrested on Queensland’s Gold Coast this morning.

NSW Police confirmed a 70-year-old man was arrested shortly before 8am (AEST) in relation to the murder of Lyn Dawson 37 years ago.

The mother of two was 30 years old at the time.

Mr Dawson, 70, a former high school teacher and former top league player, was taken to Southport on the Gold Coast where he was to be charged.

NSW police will seek an extradition.

Lyn’s brother Gregg Simms this morning said he was “quite emotional”.

“We’ve had a cry, we’ve cuddled, we’re just completely over the moon that something has finally happened,” he told The Australian newspaper. the former Her husband Chris Dawson, a former PE teacher, moved his schoolgirl lover into the family home just days after his wife went missing.

New South Wales Police Strike Force Scriven was established in 2015 to reinvestigate Ms Dawson’s disappearance.

Detectives from the taskforce asked the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to review their brief of evidence in April.

An application for a warrant was lodged after NSW Police received advice back from the DPP earlier this week.

The case has grabbed worldwide media attention after The Australian’s investigative podcast series The Teacher’s Pet, for which reporter Hedley Thomas and producer Slade Gibson won the Gold Walkley, Australian journalism’s highest honour.

Mr Dawson has always denied being involved, telling police she ran off to join a “religious cult”. However, two coroners found Lyn was probably murdered by Mr Dawson in 1982.

Police conducted a new  dig for evidence at the former family home in the northern beaches suburb of Bayview in September.

Mr Dawson, has long been a suspect in the disappearance of his ex-wife, who was last seen alive nearly 40 years ago.

“Earlier this week, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions provided advice to police, and following further inquiries, detectives applied for an arrest warrant before travelling to Queensland,” NSW Police said in a statement.

“Just before 8am today, a 70-year-old Coolum man was arrested by detectives from the Queensland Police Service’s Homicide Squad in the presence of Strive Force Scriven investigators at Biggera Waters, on the Gold Coast, in Queensland.”

Lyn and Chris Dawson were childhood sweethearts.

On the surface, they had it all — a wholesome relationship, respectable jobs and a home in an idyllic suburb on Sydney’s northern beaches.

Lyn worked as a nurse, and was regarded by family and friends as a kind and gentle person. Mr Dawson was a popular high school physical education teacher and talented sportsman.

Mr Dawson began a relationship in 1980 with his 16-year-old Cromer High School student Joanne Curtis. Their relationship became sexual, and he took the teenager into his home as a “babysitter” for his two daughters.

He tried convincing his wife to let the girl move into their home for the remainder of her schooling, saying she came from a broken home and had a violent stepfather. The couple ended up in marriage counselling.

Lyn was due to meet her mother at Northbridge Baths, where Chris worked, on January 9, 1982.

But Lyn never arrived. Mr Dawson later claimed he dropped her off at a bus stop in Mona Vale and that she called him later in the day saying she needed time to herself. Lyn was never seen again.

No more than two days after her disappearance, Joanne had moved into Mr Dawson’s home — and marital bed. She would even wear Lyn’s jewellery and her clothes

###

Jon Bon Jovi, one of the world’s biggest rock stars has paid tribute to two victims of a convicted paedophile during his live stage show in Adelaide’s Botanic Park.

He dedicated  the rock anthem “It’s My Life” to two brothers who have been testifying in Adelaide’s District Court over the last few days during the sentencing of man who abused them when they were boys.

Vivien Deboo, who  preyed on young boys he met through his local church, was yesterday sentenced to six years and seven months in jail after losing a bid to serve his sentence on home detention.

“These two brothers they put on masks and they fought a childhood abuser,” Jon Bon Jovi told the crowd, referring to the bothers and supporters who wore masks while protesting outside the court.

“They met him in court today and he was sentenced to jail.

“We have to protect our children, it’s not easy when you have to stand up in court and face your devil.

“So for those two brave brothers, my heart, my respect, this is for you guys.”

Deboo was arrested in December 2016 and the court heard he was a respected member of a South Australian church when he groomed two young brothers and forced himself onto them at locations in the Adelaide Hills and on the Fleurieu Peninsula in the 1990s.

On commercial radio station 5AA this morning David Penberthy told listeners that one of the brothers had met Jon Bon Jovi through his line of work before the concert, and he shared his story of this week’s court case with the star.

Mr Penberthy said in text messages with one of the brothers, he had been told that Jon Bon Jovi was so touched by the story that the brothers and their wives received front row seats to the concert and were taken backstage before the show.

Last week Deboo was mobbed by protesters as he entered the Adelaide District Court, protesting against his bid to avoid jail and serve his sentence on home detention.

The group, many wearing masks and carrying signs,  chanted “shame on you, Viv Deboo”

Outside of court yesterday as he was sentenced, one of the brothers — whose identity is suppressed — welcomed the sentence.

“We feel it does bring some justice and some closure to the horrendous atrocities that this man has inflicted against his victims,” he said.

“My brother and I have suffered immeasurably through this court system because this monster has refused to admit his guilt and he has dragged us to hell and back.

“We stand united that justice has finally fallen upon Deboo’s head.”

###

Australians were conned out of more than $800,000 last month as a result of scammers threatened people over the phone with arrest if they did not hand over their personal details.

One elderly person was tricked out of more than $236,000.

Figures released by the Australian Taxation Office show altogether more than 37,000 scam attempts were reported in November.

“While phone scams are the most common at the moment, scammers are constantly changing tactics,” ATO Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said..

In recent weeks the crooks have been concentrating on using a phone call with a robotic voice recording demanding you call back, with the threat:

“If we don’t hear from you we have to issue an arrest warrant under your name and get you arrested.”

Other scams include people pretending to be from the ATO, with the call showing a fake local phone number to give the impression it is legitimate, when in fact it is from an overseas call centre.

“The ATO does not project our numbers using caller ID,” Ms Anderson said.

“You can be confident that if there is a number displayed in your caller ID, it isn’t the ATO.”

The ATO reports emails and SMS scams are also circulating, with more than 6,000 people handing over their personal or financial details to scammers since July.

Ms Anderson said the ATO does contact people by phone, email and SMS, but said there were some telltale signs it might be a scam. She said the ATO will not:

  • Use aggressive or rude behaviour, or threaten arrest, jail or deportation,
  • Request payment of a debt via iTunes, pre-paid visa cards or cryptocurrency,
  • Request a fee in order to release a refund owed to you; or,
  • Send you an email or SMS asking you to click on a link to provide login, personal or financial information, or to download a file or open an attachment.

The consumer watchdog, the Australian Consumer and Corruption Commission, last week told triple j’s Hack program the voicemail threatening arrest had surged in recent time.

“We have seen a tsunami of these calls happening … many people are quite shaken by this,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said.

“Scams like this are organised crime, they have whole call centres overseas which are just constantly doing them.

“Authorities from time to time manage to close down whole call centres overseas and we see a slight drop in numbers, but they often pop up somewhere else.”

SheSociety on FacebookSheSociety on InstagramSheSociety on Twitter
SheSociety
She Society is a site for the women of Australia to share our stories, our experiences, shared learnings and opportunities to connect.