The recent child porn swoop digs up some old names in Western Australia:

The naming of those charged as a result of the Australian wide police operation against child pornography has unmasked some interesting characters. Crikey thought he recognised one Western Australian named as being arrested and charged with two offences of possessing child pornography and one of indecent recording.

The man arrested and charged is Warren Gillespie of Ocean Reef, Perth. Sure enough, a search of our archives and there he is: Close mate and former employee of both Eoin Cameron, the former member for the Western Australian federal seat of Stirling and Liberal Senator, Sue Knowles.

Cameron’s staff consisted of his son Ryan, son in law Andrew Gasper and good mate, Warren Gillespie. One year Cameron, a mere back bench member, authorised the payment of $46,000 in overtime to his family and mate; more than the staff of any other member of the federal parliament including Ministers and Opposition front bench members.

When Cameron lost his seat, Gillespie unsurprisingly obtained a job in the electorate office of Cameron’s close parliamentary colleague, Senator Knowles.

Knowles is best known, in fact only known after seventeen years in the Senate for her fearful spray in writing to her colleagues for not electing her to more travel junkets. Knowles it will be remembered demanded one of her Western Australian colleagues who had not voted for her to the sinecure, pay back $18803.48 in postage she had spent of tax-payers money promoting the colleague during a federal election.

This is not the first time Warren Gillespie has had a computer confiscated by the police attempting to solve a serious crime. In 1996 the Australian federal police using a search warrant raided Eoin Cameron’s electorate office. The warrant was issued within the meaning of 3E of the Crimes Act 1914 and named Eoin Cameron; Warren Gillespie; Andrew Gasper; Ryan Cameron.

The warrant stated (inter alia) that on or about 27 March 1995, 2 April 1995, 4 April 1995 and 7 June 1995 any or all of the above mentioned persons wrote and/or sent facsimile transmissions and/or letters conveying threats, menace, harassment or intimidation contrary to Section 28 and various parts of Section 85 of the Crimes Act 1914.

The AFP satisfied themselves that the transmissions had been sent from Cameron’s office however with the technology then available, they were unable to establish from which computer the material was generated.

While Warren Gillespie was still on Cameron’s staff, Knowles was expounding his qualities in the Senate. Knowles, so taken by her friend Gillespie, insisted in reading into the Senate Hansard, a copy of a letter he had written to the Editor of the “West”.

Gillespie had written his letter as if an ordinary member of the public, attacking Keating.

Senator Knowles — I suppose that the best way to sum that up is by reading a letter that was written to the West Australian in my home State of Western Australia by a Mr Warren Gillespie of Ocean Reef.

Senator Button —Who does he speak for, apart from Mr Gillespie? Who is he? (Senate Hansard, 9 November 1992)

Senator Knowles refused to come clean.

Here we have Knowles pretending that Gillespie was someone she did not know who had written a letter to the West Australian newspaper that she just happened upon. Bad enough Gillespie deceived the readers, Knowles was deceiving the public and Senate.

Now that Gillespie has been arrested what have Cameron and Knowles to say of their mate and former employee.

Knowles: “A spokeswoman for Senator Knowles, Sue Oldham, said Mr Gillespie had been a good worker”.

Cameron: “Mr Cameron said he met Mr Gillespie when they worked in radio. He said Mr Gillespie volunteered to work on his campaign and then worked as an electorate officer”.

Suddenly its: “I hardly know the man”. Nothing like a bit of frank honesty, not to mention the absence a kind word of compassion for the tiny victims of the alleged offender.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

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