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PETER ROEBUCK: Did the ABC and Fairfax turn a blind eye to their own criminal sexual predator?

PeterroebuckMany have lavished the high-profile, quirky and controversial cricket writer Peter Roebuck with praise for his writing after his sudden death that has now been confirmed as suicide and appears to have been prompted by South African Police inquiries of him that left him in an “agitated state.”

Francis (“the”) Leach – a former ALP member, discredited minor-level branch-stacker turned B-grade sports radio broadcaster in Melbourne – declared his love for Roebuck this morning on the sports-programme ABC Offsiders saying “we’ll miss him dearly” while others of less stench but higher rank like Fairfax CEO Greg Hywood, The Age editor and suspect in the criminal hacking investigation Paul Ramadge and even the nation’s Sports Minister Mark Arbib all expressed their sadness at his death.

We’d have thought the praise might have been best given in context given his form as a convicted criminal abuser of teenage lads in his care and the widespread gossip in media circles that Peter Roebuck was an exploitative sexual predator who used his money and clout to have his way with the poorest and most desperate of kids who wanted a way out of poverty and a chance to play cricket at an elite level that Roebuck was tempting them with.

We’re not certain that pedophile is the right word for him technically, as we are only aware of him preying on kids above the age of consent, but his behaviour certainly sounds creepy, exploitative and disturbing and it seems that his employers at Fairfax and the ABC knew his form and knew that it continued until the present day.

The issue for Fairfax and the ABC is what did they know and when did they know it? Did they enable or facilitate his wrongdoing by keeping him in a prestigious position of power, knowing that he was abusing it to sexually exploit young people?

Roebuck asked the boy to bend over and delivered three “forceful strokes” over his clothing. (He) then pulled the boy towards him, in what appeared to be an act of affection. He then asked if he could look at the marks on the boy’s buttocks, something which he in fact did.

Many of those praising him presumably knew of his private life too. More sensible folk like Gideon Haigh – probably the best cricket writer running around – generously described his work but noted the “tragic” circumstances of Roebuck’s demise.

Those who knew the whole story must have held their nose while describing him in such glowing terms.

These are not nice things to discuss when the body is still warm. There’s a taboo against it and against reporting on suicide too.

But given how pompous and judgmental and exacting the standards set out by Fairfax/ABC when evaluating how Churches, a Melbourne yeshivah and even a Governor-General deal with sexual predators who exploit those in their care for their own gratification, then it is right for there to be serious questioning of what went on here and also what Fairfax/ABC management knew and when they knew it and what – if anything – they did to stop him. Did they facilitate or enable his wrongdoing?

These are three stories that make it quite clear that Roebuck was up to no good and may well have used his authority in the cricket world that came from writing for Fairfax and working for the ABC to gain access to potential targets of exploitation. The nasty details are yet to fully emerge, but they will soon, potentially creating yet another PR crisis for the beleaguered Fairfax newspaper publisher and Australia’s state-sponsored broadcaster, the ABC:

In a statement, the victim said Roebuck told him: “I’m going to cane you now. Then it will be over and I will forgive you and, if I don’t cane you, I will feel differently about you.”
Roebuck asked the boy to bend over and delivered three “forceful strokes” over his clothing.
Mr Fenny said: “Roebuck then pulled the boy towards him, in what appeared to be an act of affection. He then asked if he could look at the marks on the boy’s buttocks, something which he in fact did.”
Another boy was beaten by Roebuck when he failed to keep up on a run. “He, too, was left feeling considerable distress and humiliation.”
A third boy, who now plays for a local team, received similar treatment, being beaten by Roebuck and asked to show the marks.
The second boy, now living South Africa, said: “I did not consent to any assault but he is a dominant person who makes you feel that you must do as he says.”

Roebuck was originally accused of indecent assault but pleaded guilty to lesser charges of common assault. However, the judge said he did not accept the purity of Roebuck’s motives.

He said: “It was not appropriate to administer corporal punishment to boys of this age in circumstances such as these. It seems so unusual that it must have been done to satisfy some need in you.

He had been a long term supporter of underprivileged African students, paying their way through university and allowing them to live in his homes.

Former Somerset cricket captain Peter Roebuck has been given a suspended jail sentence after admitting caning three young cricketers he had offered to coach.
Roebuck, 45, of Exmouth in Devon, pleaded guilty to three charges of common assault involving three South African teenagers between 1 April and 31 May, 1999.

He had pleaded not guilty to three counts of causing actual bodily harm, which was accepted by the prosecution. Roebuck was sentenced to four months in jail for each count, with the sentences suspended for two years, at Taunton Crown Court.

Judge Graham Hume Jones told Roebuck he had abused his power and influence over the boys, who were far from home and far from friends and family.

The court heard how Roebuck caned the young cricketers on the buttocks after they failed to meet his standards during coaching sessions at his former home in Taunton.

Roebuck met the three young cricketers, Keith Whiting, Reginald Keats and Henk Lindeque, who were all 19 at the time of the offences, while working as a commentator abroad.

He invited the men to live at his home near Taunton and promised to coach them.

He said he warned each young man beforehand that he would use corporal punishment if they failed to obey his “house rules”.

He also said he thought they were from a culture in which corporal punishment was accepted.

The offences came to light when one of the cricketers showed the marks Roebuck had caused to the secretary of Bishop’s Lydeard Cricket Club, who passed the matter to the police.

Paul Mendelle, defending, said Roebuck was a “complex man” who set high standards for himself and expected them of others, and who had used corporal punishment only to encourage the teenagers.

Mr Mendelle said more than 20 other promising young cricketers had stayed at Roebuck’s house while receiving coaching and had never complained about any inappropriate behaviour.

UPDATE: Peter Roebuck’s former employer, the Sydney Morning Herald, many hours after VEXNEWS was first with the worst, has confirmed what many suspected:

A Cape Town detective and a uniformed police officer from the sexual crimes unit began speaking with Roebuck, 55, in his room at the Southern Sun Hotel, Newlands, about 9pm.

Roebuck, who was agitated, asked a fellow cricket journalist for help. ”Can you come down to my room quickly? I’ve got a problem,” he said. He asked for help to find a lawyer and for contact to be made with the students he helped to house in Pietermaritzburg, near Durban.

VEXNEWS vindicated.

His employers need to now explain themselves about what measures they took to ensure their own employee was not using his position of power and prestige in cricket to exploit vulnerable young people.

UPDATE: A number of excitable tweeters thought it was appalling we dared write about these matters. We notice they’ve gone quiet now.

UPDATE: Even a sympathetic treatment of Roebuck noted he was keener on finding ‘followers’ rather than ‘partners’ in his private life…

Suggestions that he was gay have circulated since his playing days, but if true he has never acknowledged it to anyone I know. In any case, he did not crave partners on an equal footing but followers.

UPDATE: The Times of South Africa reports that Peter Roebuck made the young men in his care call him “Dad”

UPDATE: The victim of Peter Roebuck’s sex assault has spoken out to friends about the trauma.


Comments are disallowed for this post.

  1. “…widespread gossip in media circles” suggest the author of this piece had suspicions about pedophilia prior to this event. Does that make you this yarn’s Joe Paterno?

    Posted by Alex | November 13, 2011, 19:14
  2. Was this bloke in the Python “Ripping Yarns” story called “Tompkinsons School Days”

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 13, 2011, 19:16
  3. Robeuck was toxic yet he was allowed to keep abusing boys. Those who knew did nothing. Shame on them.

    Posted by betty K | November 13, 2011, 19:29
  4. Peter file

    Posted by Pt | November 13, 2011, 19:34
  5. Sounds like a very sick man.

    Posted by Bob S | November 13, 2011, 19:41
  6. Guys – you don’t *pray* on someone, you *prey* on them.

    Posted by Alan Gale | November 13, 2011, 19:42
  7. It’s easy to make an accusation, leave my poor boy alone.

    Posted by peter roebucks mum | November 13, 2011, 19:50
  8. Landeryou, you defy description.

    Posted by Chris Rees | November 13, 2011, 20:03
  9. So once again we see am article written by someone without the guts to put their name to it. Peter was never convicted of any SEX CRIME against under age boys. As usual how easy it is to attack the defenceless and it makes me sick to see the puratanic vultures gather to condemn, not knowing anything.

    Posted by Zak | November 13, 2011, 20:21
  10. Anyone for Milo cricket?

    Posted by Lord Haw Haw | November 13, 2011, 20:22
  11. Brother Abbott and myself regularly enjoyed our leisure pastimes with Brother Roebuck, but now The Lord has called on him.

    Posted by [deleted] | November 13, 2011, 20:22
  12. This is a bit harsh:
    “Francis (“the”) Leach – a former ALP member, discredited minor-level branch-stacker turned B-grade sports radio broadcaster in Melbourne…”
    As far as I’m concerned, Francis Leach is a former Triple-J announcer now working in sports radio. I reckon his political affiliations are not relevant and the term ‘discredited’ is unsubstantiated as far as I know.
    Disappointing that the author of the article goes un-named.

    Posted by Leigh | November 13, 2011, 20:30
  13. Bad Karma Week has arrived for Fairfax and not before time!

    Posted by Gregoryno6 | November 13, 2011, 20:30
  14. Will this be considered by the media inquiry? Or is anything Fairfax does OK?

    Posted by Voodoo | November 13, 2011, 20:32
  15. This article is utter trash. Sensationalised tripe that has taken every thing out of context, this deserves to be shown as an example of how NOT to report.

    Posted by Luke | November 13, 2011, 20:42
  16. Wow. You trifling pissants. While the body is still warm hey?

    A fourth order site with fifth rate writers. I guess spewing filth is the only way you’ll get noticed.

    [DELETED: anti-semitism] Best not throw stones, buttercups.

    Posted by johnny 5 | November 13, 2011, 20:45
  17. U can’t. Just make accusations let the man Rip we all mke mistakes he was a great journalist who made cricket interesting and hearing Kerry o keffe showed us wat a wonderful person he was. enough of the rumours when it is proven write this

    Posted by Anonymous | November 13, 2011, 20:55
  18. That is not true

    Posted by Anonymous | November 13, 2011, 20:57
  19. This is tawdry. If you had evidence of wrongdoing that amounted to Roebuck being a “criminal sexual predator”, it behooved you to publish it while he was alive and could defend himself. Waiting until there is no cause of action in defamation law is cowardice.

    Posted by Ashley Midalia | November 13, 2011, 20:59
  20. Gee there are some nasty people out there. Get a life

    Posted by Roger McIntosh | November 13, 2011, 21:00
  21. You nasty, horrible low life. To spread such filth hours after the man has passed away is just disgusting. I feel sorry for you, you must be deeply, desparately unhappy…

    Posted by Jackson | November 13, 2011, 21:19
  22. Why won’t Andrew Landeryou put his name to this. Also if his allegations are correct then why didn’t he do something about it.

    What a hack

    Posted by Jimbo Jones | November 13, 2011, 21:21
  23. What a cowardly, disgusting article with little basis in proof so distastefully timed.

    Posted by Richard's F1 (@richardsf1) | November 13, 2011, 21:33
  24. To those defending PR…he now lays in a freezer. Please explain? It’s quite obvious the heat was on.

    Posted by Michael | November 13, 2011, 21:39
  25. What a disgraceful article. Hang your heads in shame.

    Not that it’s as important as the gist of the article but the attack on Francis Leach is also unwarranted and he’s doing quite well on SEN

    Posted by Joe | November 13, 2011, 21:53
  26. You would hope these accusations turn out to be true Landeryou or you are in some strife.

    Posted by Anonymous. | November 13, 2011, 21:54
  27. Oh my… all these folk coming to the support of Roebuck – a man who seemed particularly unpopular in life…

    The article raises some very interesting points. Given Roebuck’s history and his recent involvement in junior coaching, you would think there would be interest from his employers – especially given they are media organisations. Pity Hinch has been muzzled!

    Posted by Forrest Gump | November 13, 2011, 22:03
  28. Ah, it all makes sense now. The Labor Party, Fairfax, the ABC. You don’t even believe this stuff, you just saw a convenient opportunity to promote some pathetic political agenda. Wow, you are even sadder than I previously thought

    Posted by Jackson | November 13, 2011, 22:05
  29. At least there’s one site in the world not being mealy-mouthed about this guy.

    Posted by coz | November 13, 2011, 22:11
  30. I believe this is called an ‘ad hominem’, assholes.

    Posted by Brad Lacey | November 13, 2011, 22:23
  31. What utter rubbish, a terrible article.

    Posted by SCG | November 13, 2011, 22:47
  32. A great human being & writer who is not here to defend & destroy these rumours. The writer of this article shuld sit down. Not everybody is majestic when it comes to socialisin

    Posted by Anonymous | November 13, 2011, 23:16
  33. Thank you Mr. scum for lending your time to put up this scum here

    Posted by RipperOfScum | November 13, 2011, 23:22
  34. Geoffrey Edelsten was forty-one years older than his vacuous second wife Brynne on the day they married. Does this make him an exploitative sexual predator too? We have a thing here called the “age of consent” and its called that for a reason. All the middle-aged men criticising this Roebuck guy should get off their homophobic high horses, because we all know what jpegs and avi’s you rub yourselves to when your wives are at bingo. And provided they are all of legal age then there is no problem (other than your own raging hypocrisy).

    Posted by Maxina | November 13, 2011, 23:37
  35. Let the truth now emerge, and I’ll bet it doesn’t get any coverage by Alan Jones. LOL!!!

    Posted by Jimbo | November 13, 2011, 23:39
  36. The ABC and Fairfax should disclose what they knew. As corporations, they are potentially just as culpable under the Federal Criminal Code for the actions of one of their people.

    Posted by Giuseppe De Simone | November 13, 2011, 23:46
  37. We now know that Peter Roebuck jumped from his hotel balcony while police were in his room. Goodness me, it doesn’t look good does it? Wouldn’t an innocent man want to defend himself against any false accusations?

    Then we have the desperate phone call to a media colleague because he had a “problem”. I would have thought that reporting such a matter is in the public interest.

    Clearly the man had issues. When you see a public figure described as “intensely private” and “troubled” then alarm bells start ringing, especially when considering the facts of his court case in 2001.

    The truth will come out. It’s only a matter of time.

    Posted by Nessy | November 13, 2011, 23:57
  38. This one is going to burn 90% of your ass Landy!

    Posted by Accelerant in waitin | November 14, 2011, 0:01
  39. The heat was on. But he may have been innocent – just incapable of dealing with people in a conventional appropriate manner.

    It is cowardice to publish this accusation against a man who cannot defend himself – also (as much as the rights of children and women and men) – a vital principle of common law. If these allegations (and your implied accusation of paedophilia) are substantiated then sure – questions ought be asked. But not by people like you who have already prejudged the facts – with utterly heresy evidence.

    The reason you are a gutless little f*ck – is not that people just don’t understand you and how you are just “speaking the truth” – but it more goes to the fact that you wait until he can’t sue for defamation. You point out the ABC’s attack on various groups. Sure – but after extensive research – and I believe always giving the accused an opportunity to explain/defend themselves. You won’t see that of course – but thats because you have no insight – probably Peter Roebuck’s problem also. Something you both might actually have in common. But at least he did something about it. Perhaps you might like to do the same – spare us your thoughts on the matter.


    Posted by GF | November 14, 2011, 0:06
  40. Posted by michael | November 14, 2011, 0:12
  41. Where was Daren Hinch in all this? Did he know what this sick commentator and Fairfax employee was up to. His lust and shame was so great he could no longer live with the truth and reality, he took his own life before justice caught up with him. May god judge him for his deeds.

    Posted by Fairfax assignment for Daren | November 14, 2011, 0:38
  42. “In Roebuck’s autobiography, Sometimes I Forgot to Laugh, he quotes his father as saying: ”In orthodox spheres Peter might be regarded as odd, whereas he is merely obscure and oblique. He is an unconventional loner, with an independent outlook on life, an irreverent sense of humour and sometimes a withering tongue.””

    obscure and oblique and a withering tongue what else did he get up to with his bat and ball and lap top

    Posted by SMH readership | November 14, 2011, 0:45
  43. Yes the article contained some opinions that weren’t really needed to be expressed. Yet this is the only article that contains “other” information which the public should know about the man.

    This is a big event in the cricket and media world. The guy did a lot for cricket, when he was amongst the people, on air and so on.

    However for a 55 year old man to jump out of a building, to his death, whilst being interviewed by police. That smacks of a man who has come to the realization that what he has done is so bad that he couldn’t bear to live with it.

    Of course it will be said that we don’t know all the facts so let’s not rush to judgement. Well, the fact of the matter is that as much as we shouldn’t judge him for his “alleged” mistakes, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth to laud him for all his “alleged” achievements. Especially when there are suggestions of sexual misconduct.

    I guess my point is. A “slap” on the hand for the writer of this article, for daring to speak their mind. However thanks for giving us more information, that we didn’t have before. Thanks to Peter Roebuck for his service to cricket and cricket media. But I’ll be damned if I herald the guy as a good bloke if he’s been committing unlawful acts on kids!

    Posted by Daniel | November 14, 2011, 1:30
  44. Well done Landeryou.

    You are the only man in the media world with the guts to tell the truth about Roebuck.

    I wasn’t a fan, but I am sorry that he has left this Earth, yet that doesn’t mean we needed all the sycophantic fawning we are being treated to by the Fairfax/ABC axis of evil.

    Child abuse? *sweep sweep* Nothing to see around here.

    Posted by Anton Rogan | November 14, 2011, 3:11
  45. Your making some very out landish statements in regards to Mr Roebuck and his colleges, I think your judgement of Franis Leach is totally nonsenseical bordering on pathetic. Have you thought of the fact he FL may not be aware to the alleged incidents or hearsay. I strongly advise you contact your legel advisors as the soon will be contacted I’m sure in person with docs in hand.

    Posted by Chris Sloane | November 14, 2011, 3:28
  46. Edelston the media whore/dodgy doctor/jail bird/dickhead class a.great example to use. Go read ya new idea you idiot

    Posted by Chris Sloane | November 14, 2011, 3:34
  47. I’m sure the author who is nameless is rock spider himself!!! If it’s good enough for him/her to throw at people

    Posted by Chris Sloane | November 14, 2011, 3:37
  48. So it turns out the author knew of PR’s behavior yet did nothing Published a vacuums of nothing!!!! If had you hard fact let’s see em. Big shot?? Little Man big Pen

    Posted by Chris Sloane | November 14, 2011, 3:49
  49. Great piece. Brave. Forthright and spot on. People in Somerset knew about Roebuck’s proclivities as long ago as 1988. Disgusting. And it finally caught up with him.

    Posted by Neal Collins | November 14, 2011, 4:38
  50. 6.30am.Monday morning Sydney .
    I’m not a journo nor a govt patty member.
    Common sence tells me something’s a miss here.
    Time will tell .
    If guilty then he’s paid the ultimate.
    If innocent then shame shame shame.
    Paul m.
    P’s … Keys take a deep breath and wait

    Posted by Pav | November 14, 2011, 5:40
  51. Innocent until proven guilty?jip it sure don’t look good hey?and I do believe that something is up bud to me that’s not the case in point.I’ve never known the man I’ve just read his articles and they were amazing its sad to cricket and it is a great lost to cricet and his input will be missed and I believe that is why we say RIP and not because we belief he is not guilty that’s an entirly difrent matter…Hansie wil always be a great cricketer and crieket personality even tho he made mistakes and should peter be guilty it should not take anything away from his articles and insights for they were great…

    Posted by zet | November 14, 2011, 5:44
  52. “A number of excitable tweeters thought it was appalling we dared write about these matters. We notice they’ve gone quiet now”

    no you’re just shit and who are you to judge?

    Posted by Anonymous | November 14, 2011, 6:34
  53. “Great piece. Brave.”

    An unsigned Google-researched hatchet job. Yeah, roll on the Pulitzer!

    Posted by Firkin | November 14, 2011, 6:39
  54. I’ve known Roebuck since I was a schoolboy and I was proud to call him a friend. He was a man of the highest integrity, unlike the author of this ‘article’, who dares not reveal his name and spits poison at a dead man. Sickening.

    Posted by Insider | November 14, 2011, 7:44
  55. Was that toad at 20.22 calling himself Cardinal Pell none other than grub Burnside QC?

    Posted by Burnside Watcher | November 14, 2011, 8:08
  56. I came to this page, because you were the only place I found that printed transcripts of his court cases involving abuse of boys in the past. They are what I wanted to know after reading the reports of his death (as opposed to the tributes to his writing career).

    Posted by anthony | November 14, 2011, 8:10
  57. Andrew it would appear that you have a whole new readership base here. What did the RSA police interview Roebuck about and and what was the cause of die?

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 14, 2011, 9:12
  58. I’m just surprised that this man’s death was covered comprehensively by the media.. His death pales into insignificance compared with the many who died and thousands forced to flee from their homes due to the floods in Thailand.
    It is notable that there is a lack of concern about the devastation in Thailand in Australian media.

    Posted by eloquent | November 14, 2011, 9:49
  59. Only one small problem with your smear campaign. The boys that you refer to were actually 19 year old men. Roebuck pleaded guilty, accepted his punishment and it was made news at the time. What more do you want. Bringing up an incident from over a decade ago – it happened in 1999 – just to fill in for the small problem of you having no facts about the current situation is pitiful.

    Posted by Barry McKenzie | November 14, 2011, 10:38
  60. Interesting how many people come out to defend a pervert who got sexual satisfaction from beating boys.

    for some reason, perverts seem to be outside the requirements of normal society and if you scratch one the whole pack descends in fury.

    Accept it, sweeties. He was a pervert alive and he is a pervert dead.

    Posted by kevin | November 14, 2011, 10:50
  61. PEODHILE !!!

    why is this man being called a pedophile when the ‘victims’ involved are in their late teens.

    Perhaps India should look into the fact that each year in Indian rural villages thousands of poverty girls as young as 12 are being married to richer men many who are over 50!!

    why is it OK for India to turn a blind eye to old men having pedophile sex with 12 year old girls.

    Now that really is a ‘sick’ society

    Posted by tony | November 14, 2011, 11:38
  62. Sydney Morning Herald have backflipped on Peter Roebuck in 24 hours: Praising him in a hagiographic obituary one day then publishing an almost apologetic ‘we hardly knew him’ article the next. Sadly for his supporters, the more news that comes out of South Africa over this, the more it’s going to to look bad for Peter Roebuck.

    Posted by Charles Ireland | November 14, 2011, 11:46
  63. Very bad form to speak ill of the dead.
    it would seem that Roebuck served his time for crimes comitted in the 1990’s & if he was being “re-tried” for these crimes, then the SA police would seem to have blood on their hands. Natural justice would say that you cant be tried for the same crime twice.

    Posted by Aidan | November 14, 2011, 12:34
  64. Roebucks mates should settle down for a bit. There is substance here – he did, after all, jump out of a window while being interviewed by an officer of the SA sexual assault unit. Suicide is not uncommon when serious sexual offenders are caught(2 ex labout MPs come to mind). Something nasty was going on and it was bad enough to drive Roebuck to suicide when he was confronted with it.

    Posted by The Canberran | November 14, 2011, 12:38
  65. Barry, if you think taking advantage of poor and vulnerable people for your own sexual gratification is A-OK provided they are over the age of consent, feel free to say it loud and proud. The man was supposed to be their cricket coach and he abused that trust. Try reading the facts in that case, especially the testimony from the victims. The common assault conviction was a plea bargain from the initial indecent assault he was originally charged with.

    Roebuck may not have been the worst of the worst in the world of sex offenders, but he should never have been allowed to work with young men again, especially poor and desperate ones. It resounds to the shame of the cricket community that he was allowed to continue working with young cricketers in any capacity.

    Posted by Position of trust ? | November 14, 2011, 12:46
  66. Whatever may emerge about his private life, we can safely say that Roebuck has jumped to his final conclusion.

    Posted by Jimbo | November 14, 2011, 12:52
  67. I wonder what was on Roebuck’s laptop that the police took away. Surely if he was innocent, why did he call his old school, and then jump, when the police were simply asking him questions not charging him? Makes no sense, unless there was something incriminating on the laptop.

    Posted by Beefy | November 14, 2011, 13:59
  68. Fairfax stands by Howard hating Ponting bashing sex fiend journalist….. the Aged and the Smear … you lot can’t sink any lower

    Posted by bravo | November 14, 2011, 14:42
  69. Adrian, read the news … The police from the sexual assault unit knocked and the door and Roebuck jumped out the window.

    Posted by bravo | November 14, 2011, 14:43
  70. The Herald Sun covered this issue today. I have no real problem with school boys at school being given the strap or cane by a teacher in from of the class for serious misbehaviour but to cane young wog men in a cricket team seems a bit odd and could be psycho-sexual behaviour.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 14, 2011, 16:03
  71. Hey Burnside watcher.
    I think you are onto something. I have analysed the work of the person posting under the pseudonym George Pell against some of Julian Bumside’s writings and I get a 95% match.
    Pretty sure it is the work of Julian Bumside QC

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 14, 2011, 17:28
  72. I have long campaigned for the cane to be re-introduced at school ….. as a recipient you understand.
    I’ve been quite naughty and yearn for School Bully Tomkinson to give me a deserved thrashing …… oooooohhhhhhh!!!

    Posted by Tomkinson's Fag of Graybridge Boarding School | November 14, 2011, 17:29
  73. The SMH and Fairfax may or may not have known about Roebuck’s “indiscretions.” But with full knowledge, 2GB still employs Chris Smith, the serial groper (sex offender). And GASP Alan Jones, arrested for indecency in a London public toilet. A dead man might be a better target than a living one that can make life hard for you? I call that cowardice.

    Posted by Simon | November 14, 2011, 17:56
  74. This is an example of the very worst fact-free gutter journalism and hysteria that sadly abounds in the internet age. A cowardly, anonymous attack. Whoever the hell wrote this, and all those on the comments section agreeing, should take a look at this and ponder whether which character they are in the sketch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCywGhHQMEw

    Posted by David | November 14, 2011, 20:34
  75. I will not have boys being critical of the cane unless they have tried it.

    Posted by Tomkinson of Fifth Form | November 14, 2011, 21:12
  76. Should we stop using the word “Fairfax press” now that the last Fairfax family member sold his shares a few days ago?

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 14, 2011, 21:13
  77. What happens up the dark end of the Dorm after lights out stays up the dark end of the Dorm

    Posted by Tomkinson of Graybridge | November 14, 2011, 21:14
  78. Perhaps the term “Fairfax” is redundant.
    How about Pedo Protection Press?

    Posted by Tomkinson of Graybridge | November 14, 2011, 21:15
  79. Fairfax and the ABC are five-star rolled gold hypocrites.
    When “sucked lemon” David Marr decided to contort himself into a position where he could weave a stale old story about his nemesis from the “hate meeja” into one of his pedestrian books, his fellow travellers at the ABC and Fairfax nodded sagely and opined “well, one normally doesn’t go there, but these are extraordinary circumstances and the public interest demands that this be aired”
    Well …. back at ya with interest …. tools

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 14, 2011, 21:20
  80. Perhaps call papers generaly Redundant Unread Press. At my accommodation business 90% of guests wanted a paper 15 years ago now 90% dont want a paper in the morning.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 14, 2011, 21:26
  81. “At my accommodation business 90% of guests wanted a paper 15 years ago now 90% dont want a paper in the morning.”

    An indication that the literacy levels of your clientele have dropped orf????

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 14, 2011, 21:30
  82. In the words of Julia Bollard “There are serious questions which need to be answered”
    What did Fairfax know?
    What did the ABC know?
    Were there any shenanigans reported to either employer?
    What did Stephen Mayne know and did he keep it under wraps?
    Is it true there was an incident in the ABC lunch-room with a work experience boy?

    See Bernard … sometimes “serious questions” can imply “answers”

    Posted by Sir Humphrey Appleby | November 14, 2011, 21:33
  83. Adrian: I suspect 15 years ago you didn’t supply toilet paper, now you do. Hence the difference!

    Posted by Giuseppe De Simone | November 14, 2011, 21:40
  84. No Fairfaxes left. Any Symes?

    Posted by Giuseppe De Simone | November 14, 2011, 21:41
  85. thanks for that. what a prick

    Posted by c | November 15, 2011, 0:18
  86. Well, all you deniers, read this from the UK Daily Mail:


    Cricketer turned commentator Peter Roebuck had been accused of sexually assaulting a 26-year-old male Zimbabwean student before he died, it was reported today.

    The alleged victim laid a charge of indecent assault against the former Somerset captain on Saturday after the pair apparently met through Facebook, a South African newspaper [The New Age] claimed.

    The New Age quoted a police officer, who reportedly confirmed a case had been opened at the Claremont police station in Cape Town.

    The article stated: ‘When The New Age queried an indecent assault charge laid at Claremont police station and spoke to Capt Malusi Mgxwathi on Sunday, Mgxwathi said: “This is the same man who committed suicide at the hotel”.’

    The newspaper claimed the broadcaster was due to be arrested but asked to change his clothes before leaving the hotel.

    The report stated that he then moved towards the window and leaped out.


    Seems he changed into a Superman suit, but it didn’t work. And it was a no refund sale at that.

    Posted by Jimbo | November 15, 2011, 2:13
  87. Cheap Chinese Super-Hero suits!!
    The factory settings are never right.

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 15, 2011, 8:03
  88. While we don’t know the true story the judges opinion of the first charge does sound the most plausible. Secondly, jumping out the window does sound unlikely for an entirely innocent person.

    Posted by Greg of maroubra | November 15, 2011, 12:23
  89. Pedo Bear approves

    Posted by The Player | November 15, 2011, 13:08
  90. Maybe he just couldn’t face the prospect of doing six more weeks on tour with Jim Maxwell and Drew Morphett

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 15, 2011, 13:28
  91. So the ABC sends someone over (first class?)to help with emotional turmoil. Whose? The young black men Roebuck frigged or tried to fuck?

    Quite apparent now the deviant had been at this caper for years. And, as a previous commenter noted, had been well paid and resourced to achieve his nefarious deeds.

    Roebuck did himself a favour jumping his way out of it, he would have been carved up in a South African prison.

    Bury the there, is he not a South African citizen? Better still, send him back to where he was born. That’s what Howard Brown did to Mamdouh Habib.

    Posted by George | November 15, 2011, 14:05
  92. So the ABC sends someone over (first class?)to help with emotional turmoil. Whose? The young black men Roebuck frigged or tried to frig?

    Quite apparent now the deviant had been at this caper for years. And, as a previous commenter noted, had been well paid and resourced to achieve his nefarious deeds.

    Roebuck did himself a favour jumping his way out of it, he would have been carved up in a South African prison.

    Bury the limey there, is he not a South African citizen? Better still, send him back to where he was born. That’s what Howard Brown did to Mamdouh Habib.

    Posted by George | November 15, 2011, 14:16
  93. Maxwell and Morphett are okay, but the thought of being trapped in a commentary box with Kerry O’Keefe could drive a sane person to jump out of a window, that’s for sure.

    Posted by Jimbo | November 15, 2011, 14:36
  94. “Maxwell and Morphett are okay”

    Now I’m worried about you Jimbo …. although it could be worse ….. Norman May could come off the bench.

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 15, 2011, 14:45
  95. jumping jack flashes

    ‘The concern about suicide was more keenly felt a world away at 2UE. Alan Jones’s broadcasting colleague John Laws telephoned to offer comfort. Laws recalls Jones was so distressed he spoke about wanting to jump out the window. Station boss Nigel Milan was worried. John Brennan [the station’s sport director] was put on the case, strings began to be pulled and, in the busy pre-Christmas period, airline seats found. Passengers were offloaded as Brennan, John Fordham [promoter] and Ross Turnbull [Australian Rugby Union and Liberal Party figure] found space on that afternoon’s QF1 to London.’

    Posted by George | November 15, 2011, 15:19
  96. I think Norm is legally blind these days, so perhaps he could do a stint as an umpire.

    Posted by Jimbo | November 15, 2011, 15:58
  97. Todat The Age and the ABC have finally started reporting the facts behind this man death and toy boy activites.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 15, 2011, 16:25
  98. Toad – nah the papers are largely all picture, celebs, kitten and bogan stories now. No wonder the last shareholder from the David Syme and Fairfax families have sold the last of their shares recently

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | November 15, 2011, 16:29
  99. “I think Norm is legally blind these days, so perhaps he could do a stint as an umpire”

    Should be handy if one has to turn a blind eye to champion bowlers who ….. ahem …… how can I put it …… chuck it.

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 15, 2011, 16:37
  100. I note Francis da-Leach is described as a B-Grade sports reporter.
    When did the promotion go through?

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 15, 2011, 19:58
  101. @George: That exact passage from “Jonestown” came to my mind when I heard about Roebuck’s suicide leap, hence my post above dated November 13, 2011, 23:39.

    Posted by Jimbo | November 15, 2011, 23:07
  102. You think suicide is a tell-tale sign of guilt do you Canberran ??

    What crimes was my mum guilty of when she jumped out the window earlier this year?

    People kill themselves because they prefer death to whatever reality they are facing. In Roebuck’s case it looks like he realised he would be outed as gay/bi as a result of whatever accusations, and felt so humiliated that he preferred death. It says more about homophobia in sport than anything else.

    I bet the ‘sexual molestation’ he was accused of was a ham-fisted pass at another bloke – something that would be a non-issue if it were a woman. PR looks to me like a closeted gay man rather than any pedophile or abuser. If you chase sheilas you’re a legend (Warnie), if its blokes, you’re a pedophile and pay with your life.

    Posted by gabe@fitzroy | November 16, 2011, 21:31
  103. @gabe: How distressing for you to read a careless statement on suicide! Nonetheless a suicide may in certain circumstances strengthen other suggestive facts, such as: Roebuck (often referred to as a “bachelor”) was a slippery social isolate who renounced British citizenship in favour of an becoming an aussie national (owns properties in Bondi and Pietermaritzburg); who maintained paternalistic power relations at his South African farm with vulnerable, poor and dependent teenage boys (whose cricket education he financed and whom he liked to have call him “Dad”); while not children, these young men are poor South Africans with whom he placed himself in loco parentis – thus, they are at the centre of activities very similar to if not identical to the perverse “grooming” patterns of paedophiles in relation to children (i.e. the abuse of the vulnerable by the powerful); he has a criminal record for similar activities (he was convicted of a charge of common assault in 1999 against three Sth African teenagers in England following a plea bargain), etc etc. His Zimbabwean adult accuser does not say that Roebuck simply made a pass at him – he accuses Roebuck of grooming him on line, luring him to a hotel room, and sexually assaulting him. The police investigation will turn up the truth at least with respect to the Facebook accusation and the charges that were bought against Roebuck by Gondo, but the Roebuck case is looking very like that of a highly conflicted closet gay abusing his carefully built-up position of trust, fame, wealth and power to satisfy his sexual needs in a place where he can fly free under the radar.

    Posted by Madam Lash | November 17, 2011, 12:33
  104. I’m only surprised the Aussie cricket team didn’t follow him!

    Posted by Grabman | November 17, 2011, 14:28
  105. Stumbled upon this website. Will have to visit more often.

    Love the writer’s ability to get Fairfax, the ABC and the Labor party all into one article about guilt, sexual perversion, suicide and hypocrisy. That’s a first rate effort, keep up the good work. You’ve clearly got that hopeless lot worked out. Their defenders here have all crawled under their rocks now that the truth is well and truly out.

    Posted by Ian | November 17, 2011, 20:23
  106. I second that Ian.

    Posted by Daniel | November 19, 2011, 0:15
  107. This educated 26 year old Zimbabwe university student was not vulnerable, and you cannot ‘groom’ adults online, he was told to contact peter by another student. He was looking for easy money. He agreed to go to a mans hotel bedroom to talk, if he was not sure at this point at least when he was asked to bring a stick with him in case he needed to be punished that should have rung an alarm bell. But he went anyway, then when asked to undress in the bedroom this man undressed. He could have started screaming at any time, but he was after money.

    Posted by Andy | November 21, 2011, 19:57
  108. I have an open mind on this. I think Roebuck was a brilliant commentator.
    But if Roebuck was a pedophile then good riddance to him for they are scum. If Roebuck was a sexual predator of young adult men then good riddance to him. And if he was a sexual predator then this would not be the first case but there will be hundreds of young males he has abused.
    When Tiger Woods infidelities first surfaced, then all of a sudden they started to fall out of the trees to tell their story. I think it ended up being 14 women went to the press.
    But it has been a week since Roebucks suicide and of all the many young men he looked after not one has alleged that Roebuck has abused them sexually. You would think that with the English papers willing to pay good money for dirt on Roebuck that at least one of Roebucks victims would have come forward to tell the world what an evil man Roebuck was. But so far not one except for this Gondo lad.
    Something smells fishy to me. Did he jump or was he pushed. There are many unanswered questions here. Why did Roebuck ask Jim Maxwell to get him a lawyer if he planned to jump? Why was there only one policeman in the room when Roebuck jumped. Why did the young man Gondo take his clothes off? My alarm bells would have started ringing then. Why did Gondo not fight back (surely a 26 yo male is stronger than a 55 yo male. Why did Gondo tell Roebuck to f*** off and just leave the room. He wasn’t being held captive.
    As I said I’ll keep an open mind about this and maybe down the track more people will come forward to confirm Roebuck was a sexual predator. And if he was , then may he rot in hell. But something is not right here (unusual in Sth africa , such a great record in regards to police corruption and fair justice)
    We’ll probably never find out the real truth.

    Posted by Damian | November 22, 2011, 7:17
  109. Damian …
    You mention that Roebuck asked Maxwell to contact a lawyer. He also asked him to contact the boys in the house … I think that request perhaps warrants more digging as well.
    I wouldn’t read too much into the fact that none of the boys in the house have spoken up yet with specific claims, although a former occupant has indicated that Roebuck got uncomfortably close and touchy a couple of times.
    They are probably holding out hope that the cash will continue to flow and are keeping quiet.
    Apparently Roebuck died intestate and, as such, the proceeds of his estate go back to his family in Engerland. They have reportedly said that they will not continue the ‘works’ in South Africa.
    It could get interesting around that time.

    And I suspect all the luminaries who have been associated with the LBW Trust set up by Roebuck in Australia will be already shopping for barge poles.

    Sad for the boys concerned but there you have it.

    Posted by Toad of Toad Hall | November 22, 2011, 11:42
  110. Hey Toad.. I hate pedophiles and sexual predators… I have some siblings and a cousin who were molested by a catholic priest and an uncle. Furthermore my partner used to work in social service dealing with rapists and pedophiles and she has related to me many of their grooming tactics and how many victims they have. So let me be clear, I think Roebuck was a brilliant cricket journalist but if he was a pedophile or a sexual predator of young adult males then good riddance to him. We don’t need scum like that on this planet. If he was a sexual predator then more people will come forward if only to seek their revenge by tarnishing his legend. And if he was a predator then mark my words their will be at least a hundred victims. You don’t start to molest people at age 55. He would have started in his late teens or early 20’s.
    Hopefully the truth will come out either way.

    Posted by Damian | November 22, 2011, 21:29
  111. Tim Lane wrote an article today about Roebuck. I was horrified when I read the words “INEVITABLY, much of the public discussion – not to mention the speculative chatter – about Peter Roebuck’s death has revolved around the nature of his living circumstances. He housed, and mentored, young men in both Sydney and South Africa.”
    There you have it, he was also molesting young Australian men to satisfy his evil urges. Disgusting, evil filth.

    Posted by It gets worse | November 27, 2011, 5:24
  112. Agree it was a curious piece.

    We have written about it here.

    Posted by VEXNEWS | November 27, 2011, 7:49
  113. Wow, and the guy isn’t around to defend himself from your unsubstantiated allegations. I bet you’d really like to make homophobic comments if you thought you could get away with it. Last time I checked, when people are over the age of consent, they are adults anyhow, but why let that get in the way of you alleged pedophilia? Put your name to the article, coward.

    Posted by Justin | November 27, 2011, 19:18