MP wants appeal on sex sentence
ATTORNEY-GENERAL Cameron Dick should appeal against the “weak” sentence handed down to Bundaberg businessman John Gerard Greenalsh for sexually assaulting a teenage boy, Member for Burnett Rob Messenger told state parliament yesterday.
Greenalsh, 52, pleaded guilty in the Bundaberg Magistrates Court to two charges of sexually assaulting the boy.
Magistrate Jennifer Batts sentenced him to 10 months' probation and a two-month suspended prison sentence.
She also ordered him to pay $500 to his teenage victim.
Mr Messenger said the sentence was completely inadequate and failed to reflect the gravity of the offences.
“Greenalsh wasn't even placed on the sex offender register,” he said.
“The family have been reported to say that they feel the justice system has completely failed them.”
Mr Messenger also called for Mr Dick's support for a parliamentary committee to examine the sentencing of child sex offenders for the past five years to determine if the penalties were in keeping with community expectations.
Mr Dick yesterday expressed his deepest sympathies to the family.
“Apart from being the Attorney-General, as a father I can appreciate the distress that such cases cause to families and the community,” he said.
But Mr Dick said the case was prosecuted by the Queensland Police Service (QPS), which had the responsibility for appealing such cases.
Questions about a possible appeal should be referred to the Police Commissioner, he said.
“The listing of an individual on the Australian National Child Offender Register is governed by the Child Protection (Offender Reporting) Act 2004 and is managed by the QPS,” he said.
But Mr Messenger said Mr Dick was dodging his responsibility as the first law officer of the state.