A dangerous sex offender who once reoffended during the drive home from prison has been released in Perth rather than the WA regional town a judge gave him permission to live in.
In August, a judge allowed the 67-year-old sex offender named DAL to reside in Geraldton, a regional town in WA along with his partner despite being ‘a serious danger to the community.’
But that decision received significant backlash in Geraldton last week, with thousands of signatories opposing the matter.
On Wednesday, things took a different turn when Attorney-General John Quigley told parliament that the man was recently released at an undisclosed location in Perth instead.
DAL was suppose to live with his partner in Geraldton, a regional town in WA (stock image)
Mr Quigley was urged by the opposition to appeal the judgment but said Solicitor-General Peter Quinlan advised him he could not because the Director of Public Prosecutions had already acted.
‘I am taking the solicitor-general at his word,’ he said.
DAL was first convicted of sexually abusing a child in 1975 and was declared a DSO (Dangerous Sex Offender) in 2015 after serving 12 years behind bars for a string of offences.
In 1991, he abused his nephew in the car while being driven from prison, reports the ABC.
After his second annual review, WA Supreme Court Justice Gail Archer last month ruled he should be released, subject to 47 strict conditions under an eight-year supervision order.
The Justice Department said DAL would be temporarily accommodated at an undisclosed court-approved location in Perth.
‘DAL will be closely monitored by the Department of Justice’s community offender monitoring unit and WA Police,’ a spokesman said in a statement.
Earlier on Wednesday, Opposition Leader Mike Nahan questioned the decision to free DAL at all.
Premier Mark McGowan said the state government remained committed to passing legislation aimed at toughening DSO laws.
‘We’ll sit as long as it takes to get those dangerous sex offenders laws through the Legislative Assembly and get them into practice as soon as possible,’ he told reporters.
The legislation amendment includes reversing the onus of proof so prisoners must satisfy the court they will comply with the conditions of a community supervision order.
There will also be a presumption against bail for DSOs charged with breaching a supervision order.
He first offended in 1975 and served 12 years behind bars for a string of offences (stock image)