There are a few golden rules in journalism.
One is that you don’t reveal your sources unless they give you a green light to do so.
The second is that you don’t identify or print the names of child sex abuse victims without their express permission.
And the third is that you don’t interview, or attempt to interview, prisoners without being authorised by the Corrective Services Department to do so
In one fell swoop The Australian’s new found golden boy Geoffrey Luck has broken all three rules. Repeatedly.
The email reprinted above was sent by Luck to a prisoner, the reformed man on life parole who has been the subject of his baseless vitriolic attacks in our only national newspaper over recent weeks.
This email is simply a representative illustration of Luck’s flagrant flouting of the law. It is in fact one of more than 50 that the journalist has sent the man in the course of his repeated attempts over the past year and more to interview and draw forth a statement from him, every single contact made without authority being applied for or granted by Corrective Services Queensland.
Similarly Luck’s co-author and sidekick, the Quebec born and raised Ean Higgins – who one suspects (although he has not disclosed it) was personally acquainted with the Canadian lawyer Conrad Luck from Quebec, whose spurious allegations against the paroled man have been published repeatedly by The Australian without proper examination or reasonable attempts to corroborate the claims – had contacted the man on a number of occasions in attempt to interview him without being authorised to do so.
That’s strike one against the distinctly un-dynamic duo.
The name and email address that I have redacted in the email are those of the paroled man. I have not interviewed him, or sought to. He is a friend of mine who has provided support to me during my struggles to cope with and address the trauma resulting from my own abuse at the hands of adults when I attended a Brisbane private school, and in recent weeks I have been returning the favour due to my concerns about his well-being and that of his family in the face of the vicious unsubstantiated attacks that Luck, Higgins and The Australian’s editor Paul Whittaker have been making on him.
In the course of providing that support – publicly disclosed in the first story I published about the issue, as transparency and ethics demand – I have gained access to the barrage of emails Luck and Higgins have launched at the man. The email published above is but one of the multitude of those unlawful battery of harassing communications.
The name that I have marked as ‘CENSORED’ is that of another child abuse victim, a man in his sixties who was sexually assaulted whilst a student by a long-time boarding master and photography tutor at the Anglican Church Grammar School at East Brisbane, widely known across the State as ‘Churchie’.
The boarding master and photography tutor was a man named Harry John Wippell. a life-long bachelor and old boy of the school who as an adult held – under the express authority of then headmaster Harry Emmanuel Roberts, a contemporary and life-long friend of the notorious pedophile Dr Frederick William Whitehouse, who he appointed to the role of rowing coach at the school – roles at Churchie in various capacities for over two decades, despite Roberts having received complaints about his improper conduct toward schoolboys under his care and control.
Wippell is known to have been an associate of Queensland’s most prolific serial pedophile Clarence Henry Howard-Osborne, the man they called a monster who committed suicide after he was arrested for sexual crimes against children and police discovered lewd photographs of 2500 plus teenage males at his home.
The man whose name I have marked CENSORED was one of the complainants in criminal charges of child-sex abuse laid by police against Wippel in the early 2000’s (the pervert was later acquitted on those particular charges due to evidential difficulties common to historical abuse cases, and died before further charges relating to his unlawful dealings with schoolboys could be heard).
CENSORED is also believed to have launched, or foreshadowed launching, legal action against Churchie in relation to his abuse. It is our understanding that his claims of abuse were accepted by the school and that he received a confidential, albeit paltry due to the statute bar then estopping his action, settlement paid by the school, which makes him officially a child-sex abuse victim and means that under law his name cannot be published in any form or revealed to a third party without his consent.
Geoffrey Luck revealed the victim’s name to the paroled man without his consent. Not once, not twice, but repeatedly in a series of emails sent to the man. CENSORED was not known to the man, and he was unaware that CENSORED was a victim of abuse by Wippell prior to Luck making these unlawful and completely unethical disclosures.
That’s strike two.
In his email to the man Luck reveals, or more correctly alleges, that CENSORED was provided with his (Luck’s) email address by a highly esteemed and multi-award nominated journalist from The Australian named Michael McKenna. I am not in a position to aver definitively that McKenna did not provide consent for Luck to name him as a source of information in his email. but given that reporter is known to me and is a man of the highest integrity and ethical standards I feel comfortable to speculate that it is highly unlikely, and that Luck has dogged his stablemate to the paroled man.
Similarly, in his email Luck reveals that CENSORED provided him with the paroled man’s address, and whilst again I am in no position to categorically state that CENSORED did not give luck permission to reveal his name as the source of the information about the paroled man’s address, once more it is extremely improbable.
Three strikes and your Luck’s out.
Or outed, whichever you prefer, but either way one thing is for sure.
Geoffrey Luck is an absolute disgrace.
That I can say without equivocation, so I’ll say it again.
This poor excuse for a reported is an absolute disgrace.
Luck’s credibility is zero, and a wise reader will heed my sage advice that anything the man writes should be taken not with a grain, but with a silo of salt.
Archie Butterfly. Geebung.