You might have missed the Page 1 headlines, but here's something you shouldn't overlook - The fact that the person involved was described by Police as a member of the Arms Guild.  As our membership is known to the Police, and the gentleman himself involved didn't mention it to the media, we contend that the Police deliberately leaked the Guild's name to the media. What are they trying to accomplish? Guilt by Association? Conviction by Media Report?  Membership of a prescribed seditious group is now a criminal charge in Queensland, perhaps?

What they DID accomplish was a breech of the Privacy Act.

 

DOCTOR CHARGED OVER GUN STASH
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Paul Doneman & Michael Madigan

      The  Courier Mail (24-10-05)  
 

 

A NORTH Queensland doctor has been charged after an arsenal of banned weapons was found in a purpose-built underground bunker on his luxury property.

The doctor's chicken pen was the cover for a stockpile of military-style weapons allegedly hidden in wall cavities and under the floor of a bunker, vault and shed in bushland near Innisfail.

The walk-in bunker – sniffed out by Customs firearms and explosives detector dog "Maverick" – was professionally built and had a steel, safe-like door.

Inside a nearby shed, several more guns were found secreted in a wall cavity. More weapons and ammunition were found in a vault and in a safe in the man's garage.

Police yesterday confirmed they seized 51 firearms, including four fully automatic assault rifles, two Uzi sub-machine guns and 100,000 rounds of ammunition following raids at the doctor's residence and business in Innisfail over two days.

Parts of the Uzis are believed to have been received in the mail from overseas.

Silencers, a bullet-proof vest, M60 machinegun belt ammunition and other firearm components were also found.

Dr John Di Palma, 53, was charged with 46 weapons-related offences, including possession of restricted weapons and possession of unlicensed weapons, and is expected to appear in the Innisfail Magistrate's Court on November 14.

Police said yesterday there were no links between the doctor and extremist groups.

Health Minister Stephen Robertson has ordered an urgent review of Di Palma's position as a government medical officer and whether his services would still be required.

Di Palma is not a Queensland Health employee but as a government medical officer he performs autopsies and issues death certificates.

Medical Board of Queensland executive officer Jim O'Dempsey said the board would meet tomorrow night about whether it should take action against Di Palma.

Mr O'Dempsey said it was unlikely the board could act unless the offences related to Di Palma's professional practice or he was deemed a risk to patients.

Police said some of the outlawed weapons had been collected over the past several years.

Ballistic experts will examine the weaponry and try to track their origins through serial numbers.

It is one of the largest arsenals ever uncovered in the north Queensland region, but police say the guns' alleged owner is just a firearm enthusiast who may have got carried away.

"Nothing more than a very avid gun collector," Far Northern Region crime co-ordinator John Harris said.

"He certainly doesn't collect model aeroplanes.

"(But) there is no evidence of connection to any sort of group or organisation."

Detective Inspector Harris said police and Customs officers raided both a private residence and a business at Innisfail, just south of Cairns, last Thursday and Friday.

"We had to use tools to remove a portion of the wall to locate these guns," Insp Harris said.

He said the owner had appeared very "professional" in the manner in which he looked after his weapons, none of which was left lying around the property.

"He's looking after his toys."

Insp Harris said there was nothing to suggest the man was connected to community militia groups which have been known to operate in the far north.

But he suspected that more charges might follow once all forensic testing had been completed.

"The scientific and ballistic examination is going to take some considerable time," Insp Harris said.

"There may be further charges."

Police refused to reveal any details of how the man obtained so many guns, but Insp Harris said the Internet might have played a part.

Innisfail Mayor Neil Clarke said Di Palma was a well-respected member of the medical fraternity and his arrest would come as a surprise to many people.

"I can't believe it . . . He's been (in Innisfail) for such a long time," Cr Clarke said.

Di Palma is a member of the Arms Collectors Guild of Queensland, whose website describes the group's aims as "the pursuit of the preservation of military and sporting firearms, edged weapons, and accoutrements of all eras"

 

COMMENT: Most irregularly, and in what Dead Canary alleges to be an officially condoned breach of the Privacy Act, the Weapons Licensing Branch have deliberately and with forethought released a person's private membership of the Arms Guild of Queensland.  How's this for an dirty tricks impingement of your legal rights?  Of course, what legal rights the Australian Government might give you  pursuant to the Privacy Act, the Queensland Police can negate by Press release to the Courier-Mail.

Gone are the days when the law applies to the WLB.

Can we now expect the membership of the Arms Guild of Queensland to be classified as a Terrorist Organisation? Will the names of the gun clubs which a person is a member of be announced if they are on charges? Will they now announce an individual's membership of The Queensland Club, or of Rotary, or make an announcement of a person's affinity to a Chess or Bridge Club? What about if he is C of E, or of the Jewish faith?   What sort of creeping bureaucratic abomination is this, to NAME a person's private affiliations for release to a newspaper?  

 

 
 
IF YOU SEE A MEDIA REPORT WHICH IS WORTH SHARING, E-MAIL THE TEXT OR THE WEB-LINK TO US AND WE'LL CONSIDER IT.


 

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