Abuser's Strait appeal fails

Written By miftah nugraha on Senin, 22 April 2013 | 19.55

A MAN who sexually abused a child on the Spirit of Tasmania has lost an appeal against his conviction, despite claiming the vessel was in Tasmanian rather than Victorian waters.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was convicted in the County Court of Victoria of one count of the sexual penetration of a minor and two counts of committing an indecent act with a child under 16.

He was jailed for three years.

But he appealed his conviction on the basis the ferry was not in Victorian waters at the time of the offences and the court did not have jurisdiction.

Victorian Court of Appeal Justice Geoffrey Nettle said the man claimed to have boarded the ferry after dark on April 8, 2003, and spent 40 minutes in his cabin before spending another 40 minutes wandering the ship.

He returned to the cabin and offered to buy the victim a PlayStation game in exchange for performing a sexual act.

The ship's captain, who was called to give evidence, said the ship -- according to the deck log books -- crossed into Tasmanian waters at 1.40am.

At the man's trial, the Crown said the boat had left Melbourne at 9.01pm and had taken four hours and 40 minutes to reach Tasmanian waters and the offences happened within that time.

The Court of Appeal found that the jury was entitled to find the offences happened in Victorian waters and dismissed the appeal.


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