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Running a child abuse Royal Commission is a sensitive task.

Just ask the victims of serial – and seemingly school-sanctioned – rapists Kevin Lynch and Gregory Robert Knight who gave public evidence in  Brisbane’s case study 34 in front of a gallery packed with iPad wielding reporters, and live-streamed cameras in their every gaze.

Or perhaps ask the victims of the pedophile pair who, in the comfort of a plush private hotel room paid for at public expense, poured out their mournful sorrow and its symbiotic pain to the one-time Commissioner of a police force that shrugged its shoulders to their suffering,  and poured scorn upon their shame.

Ask them about the breakdown they suffered not long after sharing their stories. Ask them about the attempt – or attempts – that they made to take their own lives.  Ask them the names of their former classmates who are unable to tell you about their own attempts, because their attempt succeeded.

Ask them, and listen to their answers. Feel their pain. Then you will understand just how sensitive a task running a child abuse Royal Commission really is, and why  rape victims, whether now big or small, are so unlike any other witnesses, and why their welfare is paramount and they require such judicially unfamiliar sensitive care.

And why the public release of the name of two victims of Kevin Lynch during their time at Brisbane Grammar is not just a titanic breach of the Royal Commissioners own orders, but a travesty that may well have ended in tragedy should events have unfolded differently.

The names of the victims are contained in one of the statements of Grammar boarding master turned sports supremo Ron Cochrane – about whom, coincidentally, we have very recently heard some very disturbing tales – that are published on the Royal Commission website in the exhibits attached to Case Study 34. The names should, by law decreed by the Commission itself, have been redacted or concealed in the publication, but for reasons unknown they have not, and are available for all the world to see.

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Some say that there is but a single birthday that stands between Rocket Ronny Cochrane and another perhaps more personal visit to the Brisbane Magistrates Court

Due to the sensitivity of the matter we won’t be following our usual practice of publishing the documents in question in order to evidence the allegations that we have made in our story, and instead have forwarded the evidence to two of Australia’s finest writers – well to one of its finest anyway, and to a multi Walkley Award winning journalist – on the basis that they use the information only for the purpose of verifying the truth of this tale, and undertake not to reveal or republish the victim’s names.

Trust us though, what’s written is true, and it’s a bloody scandal. We hope that those responsible for the unlawful privacy breach are justly dealt to, and that the victims concerned sue the Commonwealth for millions. More importantly though we pray that the pair have suffered no harm.

Running a child abuse Royal Commission sure is is a sensitive task.

So maybe it’s about time the runners realised it, and stood up to their marks.

Ready? Set? Go!

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