Statement of Innocence by Ivan Milat

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May 15, 1998 :

That morning of my arrest and the circumstances the police used to justify it. Paul Onions (crown witness} was given 13 photos to look at and he chose me.

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He had no choice – I was the only one with the blackhair and the type of moustache, similar to the description he gave to police after he was robbed at gunpoint near the Belanglo Forest in 1990. He looks at photos and then writes out a statement to back up his description.

It was unreal. It was all there, my pepper and salt hair, colour of eyes, etc. I had to agree it was my photo he looked at in 1994, as it was one from 1990.

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They (police) changed the 1990 description Onions originally gave in Bowral at the police station. At that interview he said his attacker was 6 foot tall, black hair, Merv Hughes moustache aged mid thirties(The original statement Onions made to the police has never surfaced).

The eyes of his attacker went from wearing dark sub-glasses to narrow squint eyes. He made the original statement to police 20 minutes after his attack. Onions had been in his assailant’s car for over an hour. His first description would be accurate.

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It was not until Onions returned to Australia in 1994 that the matter of Yugoslav parents and my divorce were mentioned as part of conversation with Onions robber. I complained that there were no other people in the 13 photos shown to Onions that resembled me in the photo lineup of 1994. The police answer to that was “the description given by witness Onions was sufficient”.

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