The following is an extract from a news article titled Keelty’s rage at Moti manoeuvres which appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald on October12, 2006.
Mr Keelty said yesterday he was concerned about “recent developments” involving both PNG and the Solomons.
“If the criminal justice system is corrupted, or otherwise interfered with, a community is left with few options, the least desirable of those options is for them to take the law into their own hands,” he said. Mr Keelty said if it had not been for the recovery of more than 3700 weapons since the Australian-led law and order restoration force arrived three years ago, he believed there would have been “numerous” fatalities in the April riots.
He pointed to shadowy vested interests behind violence and intimidation in the Solomons.
The occasion for former Australian Federal Police (“AFP”) Commissioner Keelty’s rage, or perhaps rave, against Mr Julian Moti QC was a presentation he made to the National Press Club in Canberra the day before, titled Policing in a Foreign Policy Space. History has shown and will no doubt continue to show that the speech Keelty delivered on October 11, 2006 and his follow up comments to the press gallery was nothing more than a congratulatory self-slap on the back from a man who is seemingly unable to differentiate reality from spin. In fact, Commissioner Keelty’s delusions about the competence of his beloved AFP became such an embarrassment to the Australian Government that it sought and received his resignation, which came into effect on 2 September, 2009. On hearing of Keelty’s resignation, Dr Haneef’s lawyer, Rod Hodgson made the following observation:
“The AFP under Mr Keelty was incapable of accepting responsibility and, when mistakes were made, they sought to blame them on someone else such as the Commonwealth DPP”
This was followed with Barrister Stephen Keim, who also represented Dr Haneef, observing that Commissioner Keelty’s resignation:
“Provides an important opportunity for the Commonwealth Government to correct the built-up mistakes from the past… One of the problems with Mr Keelty is that in his public statements over the years he has not shown any ability to acknowledge error on his part or the organisation”
Indeed, error and contrition are words seemingly unknown in the Keelty vocabulary. The Keelty inspired bungle that was the Haneef affair cost the Australian taxpayer at least $7.5 million, together with an additional $1.8 Million in compensation for Dr Haneef. For the princely sum of $9.3 Million, Keelty made Australia the laughing stock of international policing community. But, to borrow a phrase from a well-known Australian marketer, “wait there’s more” – indeed there is a lot more.
“If the criminal justice system is corrupted, or otherwise interfered with, a community is left with few options, the least desirable of those options is for them to take the law into their own hand” Phrases such as this, along with other meaningless flummery ran like a sewer from Keelty’s gilded tongue. What would cause a criminal justice system to become corrupted? One way would be when a Police Commissioner refused “to acknowledge error on his part or the organisation”, the very crime Keim accused Keelty of!
While Dr Haneef remains an innocent victim of AFP corruption, there remain a number of more serious examples for which the victims are still awaiting justice. The most recent example is that of Mr Julian Moti QC, the former Attorney-General of the Solomon Islands who was kidnapped by the AFP and brought to Australia to stand trial on trumped-up child sex charges. In December the High Court of Australia granted Moti a permanent stay on the child sex charges because of the illegal actions of the AFP in kidnapping him from Honiara and forcing him to Australia against his will.
In his speech to the National Press Club on October 11, 2006 Keelty went on state that:
“What if Moti was not a politician? What if he was accused of another type of crime? Albeit that it would be hard to imagine a more deplorable crime than the one alleged…”
Actually, I can imagine a crime more deplorable than the one that Moti was alleged to have committed. The crime I’m thinking of is putting self and political interests ahead of your duty and obligations as Australia’s most senior police officer.
If indeed there is a culture of corruption in the Solomon Islands, which Keelty argued there was, how does behaving in an imperious and racist manner assist in bringing the ‘rule of law’ to a community that is allegedly rotting from the head down? No, I didn’t make a mistake when I used the word racist. Moti was most assuredly a victim of the anti-indigenous racism that so infects the Australian psyche, a mindset that is reinforced from the top down by Australia’s so called leaders.
Moti did commit a crime and that crime was that he attempted to put the interests of the indigenous peoples of the Pacific ahead of Australia’s neo-colonial interests in the same region. This brings me to the focal point of this post.
The following is part of an interview between Australian Broadcasting Commission (“ABC”) journalist Gillian Bradford and then Australian Federal Police (“AFP”) Commissioner Mick Keelty, which aired on the ABC’s PM programme on October 11, 2006.
GILLIAN BRADFORD: There are some who think the Government is carrying out its own witch-hunt in pursuing Julian Moti. But Mick Keelty says the AFP has been onto the case since 2004, and it has an obligation to pursue any Australian thought to have committed child sex offences overseas.
MICK KEELTY: It had absolutely nothing to do with the intended appointment of Moti as Attorney-General in Solomon Islands. And indeed all of our activities, particularly the work that we’ve done with the young female victim, or the alleged victim, was even before the Sogavare Government was put in place.
Keelty’s comments to Bradford contain two statements with which I wish to take issue. The first is that the AFP’s pursuit of Moti had absolutely nothing to do with his “intended appointment… as Attorney-General in Solomon Islands.” In fact, it had everything to do with his intended appointment. Each time it was mooted by Honiara that Moti might be appointed to the position of Attorney-General of the Solomon Islands the child sex allegations for which he had previously acquitted in 1997 were revived. In the period between 1997, when Moti was originally acquitted of the child sex charges and December 2007, when he was kidnapped by the AFP and unlawfully returned to Australia, he had entered and left Australia legally on numerous occasions without incident. The real issue was that Canberra and its minions in the AFP could not tolerate a black man speaking up for black rights to a white Australian male! And Australia is asking the world’s black communities to vote for it next year, to be awarded with a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council!
The second issue I have with Keelty’s statement is that he pretends concern for “the young female victim”. At the end of 2005, about ten months before Keelty’s speech at the National Press Club where he spoke up for “the young female victim” of Moti’s alleged crime, an Australian Aboriginal female bank executive was indecently assaulted by a politically connected Canberra based public servant in the centre of Canberra, the AFP’s policing heartland. What happened to this investigation? Nothing, because the AFP under Keelty and policy which seems to continue to this day, refuse to investigate complaints made by indigenous Australians against non-Indigenous Australians. And Keelty expects us to believe that he has concern for “the young female victim” of Moti’s alleged crime. The real answer is black and white, and in Australia at least, according to the AFP, if you’re black you have no rights. And Keelty wants us to believe …
If the Haneef investigation cost the Australian taxpayer $7.5 Million, imagine how much the Moti fit-up cost each and every Australian taxpayer. If Haneef was awarded $1.8 Million in compensation paid for by the Australian taxpayer, imagine how much Moti is likely to be awarded! Both Moti and Haneef are Australians of Indian extraction, which left them exposed to the racism and xenophobia which so corrupts Australian society from the top down. Haneef and Moti have been denied justice by a corrupt and racist AFP because of their ethnicity, in the same way that Australia’s most senior Aboriginal Australian female bank executive has been denied justice.
It is racism and some form of misguided white superiority complex that has “corrupted, or otherwise interfered” with Australia’s criminal justice system. Perhaps if Moti hits the Australian Government’s ‘hip pocket nerve’ hard enough, Australia will wake up and realise that all (wo)men are born equal.