MAKO - Australian News - Mark Christopher Harvey

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Jail time extended for deviant Mark Christopher Harvey whose crimes sparked Debelle Inquiry

The sexual deviant whose crimes sparked the Debelle Inquiry has been jailed until at least 2018 by the state’s highest court, which found his original sentence manifestly inadequate.
In June, Mark Christopher Harvey, 43, — whose illicit acts against children sparked the Education Department sex abuse scandal — was jailed for two years by the District Court.
Today, in a unanimous decision, the Full Court of the Court of Criminal Appeal overturned and increased that punishment.
In her written reasons, Justice Anne Bampton said that sentence — which left Harvey eligible for parole in May — must mark society’s condemnation of such crimes.
“The head sentence and non-parole period had to reflect that this offending was a gross breach of trust, that it was not an aberration or momentary lapse of judgment, that it was committed against four victims over an extended period of time, and that it has caused a feeling of outrage and revulsion in the community,” she said.
Harvey had stood trial accused of four counts of persistent sexual exploitation of a child.
Those offences were committed between January 2007 and December 2011, and included blindfolding the victims for sexually-explicit “taste tests” and softly biting their toes.
Parents at the school’s Outside School Hours Care (OSHC), however, were not told of the 2007-2011 offending until November 2012.
By that time Harvey was already in custody, having been jailed in February of that year for having unlawful sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 14 in December 2010.
Although Harvey was convicted of the offences, the District Court suppressed that fact pending possible future legal action — a gag that was not lifted until May.
In victim impact statements, the children’s parents and the school said Harvey’s deliberate, sinister, sly and escalating crimes had affected them deeply.
Prosecutors subsequently filed an appeal, saying Harvey’s penalty was manifestly inadequate.
During the appeal hearing, prosecutors argued Harvey’s sentence was unreasonable, plainly unjust and sets the bar of punishment far too low for future cases.
Today, Justice Bampton resentenced harvey to 11 years’ jail with a non-parole period of six years and six months.
She backdated that sentence to when he was first taken into custody in February 2012.
Chief Justice Chris Kourakis and Justice Malcolm Blue concurred with Justice Bampton’s findings.
Harvey will now be eligible to apply for release on parole in August 2018.

www.adelaidenow.com.au (29-9-2014)
Ken McGregor/ Sean Fewster

MAKO/Files Online.. Listing Australian Convicted Paedophiles/ Sex Offenders/ Child Killers.. FREE Public Service..

DDP is seeking to keep Mark Christopher Harvey behind bars

South Australia’s Director of Public Prosecutions is seeking an extension of the “manifestly inadequate” jail sentence given to the paedophile who sparked the Debelle royal commission.
Mark Christopher Harvey was convicted two weeks ago for sex crimes against four young girls.
Harvey, 43, abused the girls while he was the director of an after-hours school program at a primary school in Adelaide’s west.
The court heard that between January 2007 and December 2011, Harvey committed indecent acts against the girls, including blindfolding them for ‘taste tests” and softly biting their toes.
However, parents at the school’s Outside School Hours Care were not told of Harvey’s crimes until November 2012.
By that time he was in jail for having unlawful sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 14.
Harvey’s offending sparked the Education Department sex abuse scandal and the Debelle royal commission into the handling of child sexual abuse.
Judge Michael Boylan last month jailed Harvey for two years and ordered the sentence be added to his existing six-year term for abusing another student.
He backdated Harvey’s three-year, three-month non-parole period to February 2012, making him eligible to seek release in May 2015.
With time already served, Harvey will be eligible for release in May.
The DPP has lodged the paperwork in the Court of Criminal Appeal, saying both the sentence and the non-parole period were “manifestly inadequate”.
A date for the hearing will be set later.

www.news.com.au (15-7-2014)

SA court told pedophile OSHC worker Mark Christopher Harvey ruined his victims and their school

Court sketch of Mark Christopher Harvey, who has been convicted of sexually abusing young children at an Out of School Hours Care facility.

The deliberate, sinister, sly and escalating crimes of pedophile child care worker Mark Christopher Harvey ruined children’s lives and tarnished a school’s reputation, a court has heard.
Prosecutors today urged the District Court to impose a substantial jail term upon Harvey, 43, for his persistent sexual abuse of four young girls in his care.
Mark Norman, SC, said there could be no mercy for the man whose deviant actions sparked the Debelle Inquiry into school sex abuse, due to the life-altering effect upon his victims.
“The only real mitigation here would have been a guilty plea, and that did not happen,” Mr Norman said.
“We have heard nothing about contrition or remorse, even at this stage, and I understand there is an appeal on-foot.
“There’s been not a hint of remorse.”
In February, Harvey stood trial accused of four counts of persistent sexual exploitation of a child .
Those offences were committed between January 2007 and December 2011, and included blindfolding the victims for sexually-explicit “taste tests” and softly biting their toes.
Parents at the OSHC, however, were not told of the 2007-2011 offending until November 2012.
By that time Harvey was already in custody, having been jailed in February of that year for having unlawful sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 14 in December 2010.
Harvey’s offending, and the State Government’s response to it, sparked the Education Department sex abuse scandal and the 280-page Debelle Inquiry.
Although Harvey was convicted of the offences, the District Court suppressed that fact pending possible future legal action — a gag that was not lifted until May.
Full public disclosure of Harvey’s criminal history prompted the State Opposition to call for the release of the unedited Debelle Inquiry report.
Today the court heard victim impact statements written by the mothers of two of the victims.
The first of the mothers said the stress of the situation had caused her to suffer a life-threatening medical incident.
“My kids had to spent their school holidays wondering if their mother was going to live,” she said.
“I feel as if I’ve failed my children, as a mother, to protect them ... the children are also scared I’m going to have another (medical incident).
“Mark, you have no idea how many lives you have destroyed.”
The second of the mothers said her “confident, happy and carefree” daughter was now plagued with fear and anxiety.
“The innocent joys of being a child have been taken away from her, (while) my husband and I struggle with feelings of helplessness and guilt,” she said.
“Because of what you did for your own selfish, twisted satisfaction, the simple things that a little girl should be able to do and enjoy are huge struggles.
“What you did is inexcusable, your actions have changed the course of our daughter’s life and not in a positive way.
“For as long as we live we will not forgive the damage you have caused (our) most precious and beautiful girl ... shame on you, Mark Christopher Harvey.”
The court also heard a community impact statement written by the school — only the second time in legal history such a statement has been provided.
Read by Tony Kerrin, representing Commissioner for Victims’ Rights Michael O’Connell, it outlined “immediate and devastating consequences” for staff, students and parents.
The school said it suffered a drop in enrolments, tension between teachers, false allegations lodged by parents and a dramatic increase in student misbehaviour.
“Our reputation was tarnished beyond comprehension (and) the full impact may never be known,” the statement read.
“The impact that one person can have on an entire community is unfathomable (but) we will not allow these disgraceful acts to destroy a culture that has taken so long to develop.”
Mr Norman told the court the maximum penalty for Harvey’s “deliberate, sinister, sly and escalating” crimes was life imprisonment.
He said Harvey’s existing sentence should be extended, and a new non-parole period imposed, because he had “misled the court” that the 2010 offending was an isolated incident.
Peter Morrison, for Harvey, said his client needed dialysis three times a week, for five hours at a time, and so would “do hard time” in prison.
He urged the court to compare Havey’s actions to those of other convicted pedophiles when imposing sentence.
“There are far more serious examples of this type of offending that are routinely before this court,” he said.
“These offences are serious but, compared to some ... in the scale of things this is at the lower end of the scale.”
Mr Morrison confirmed Harvey had lodged an appeal and did not accept the guilty verdict, but nonetheless realised he had “serious issues that need treatment”.
Judge Michael Boylan remanded Harvey in custody for sentencing next week.

www.news.com.au (20-6-2014)

SA court convicts Mark Christopher Harvey of child sex offences and lifts suppression order

The child care worker who sparked the Education Department sex abuse scandal has been found guilty of offending against four girls.
The Advertiser can now report Mark Christopher Harvey has been convicted of persistently sexually exploiting four girls, after the District Court today lifted existing suppression orders.
The court’s decision has prompted the State Opposition to call for Attorney-General John Rau to release the unedited version of former Supreme Court judge Bruce Debelle’s inquiry into the Education Department.
Opposition education spokesman David Pisoni told The Advertiser the time had come for all of Mr Debelle’s discoveries to be made public.
“Pursuant to Justice Debelle’s recommendations 41 to 43, the State Liberals will be calling on Attorney-General Rau to release the unedited version of the report,” he said.
“Justice Debelle recommended that all non-confidential transcripts of evidence and exhibits be released to the public at the same time, as this serious ongoing matter is firmly in the public interest.
“What parents of children at a western suburbs school learnt in December 2010 and South Australians learnt in October 2012 is that this State Labor Government has a casual attitude to child protection.”
Reporting Harvey’s latest convictions — and his previous history of deviant offending — had been banned by court order pending a trial on yet another set of allegations.
Today, prosecutor Mark Norman, SC, told the court those allegations would not proceed to trial and there was no reason for the suppression to remain in force.
Judge David Smith revoked the order and, following submissions by The Advertiser, further revoked all suppression orders pertaining to Harvey.
In February Harvey, 43, stood trial accused of four counts of persistent sexual exploitation of a child .
Those offences were committed between January 2007 and December 2011, and included blindfolding the victims for sexually-explicit “taste tests” and softly biting their toes.
Parents at the OSHC, however, were not told of the 2007-2011 offending until November 2012.
By that time Harvey was already in custody, having been jailed in February of that year for having unlawful sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 14 in December 2010.
Harvey’s offending, and the State Government’s response to it, sparked the Education Department sex abuse scandal and the 280-page Debelle Inquiry.
During Parliamentary question time this afternoon, Mr Rau said the uncensored Debelle Report would not be released yet.
He said there may be further legal action forthcoming, and the government needed to know if that would go ahead before making decisions about the full report.

The much-delayed public conclusion to the prosecution of deviant child care worker Mark Christopher Harvey brings with it much-needed transparency.
For years, this case has been shrouded by varying levels of secrecy — some of it the result of good legal principle, some of it due to suppression orders of questionable value.
When Harvey was first arrested for his 2007-2011 offending, he could not be named because of longstanding state law prohibiting reports of sexually-based crimes.
That order lapsed when he was committed for trial, but his past convictions could not be mentioned for fear of prejudicing a jury.
Harvey opted to be tried without a jury, however, and so his history was laid bare — only to be suppressed once again when he was found guilty of the 2007-2011 offending.
That new conviction was suppressed as well because he was potentially facing trial on other matters — a situation that is not uncommon, but here attracted an uncommon level of secrecy.
Beyond the bounds of the courtroom, Harvey’s conduct was central to an unprecedented inquiry that revealed just how little the public is told about criminality within the Education Department.
“Secrecy” was, it seemed, the watchword for the Department’s performance, with more than 80 investigations ongoing as of February this year.
Today The Advertiser asked Judge David Smith to pull back the shutters on everything to do with Harvey and His Honour agreed — a move for which he deserves great credit.
It is long past time this sad, sorry saga was brought into the light so that the public can be truly informed of undoubtedly awful acts being committed against its most vulnerable members.

www.news.com.au (7-5-2014)

Premier's office asked how to make representations to parole board over release of child rapist Mark Christopher Harvey, who sparked Debelle inquiry

The Premier's office investigated how to make an unprecedented representation to the parole board over the release of the man who sparked the school sex scandal.
The request for advice from the Attorney-General's office was made on the same day as the release of the Debelle report into the botched response to the rape of a child by the out-of-school-hours carer.
The worker, Mark Christopher Harvey , can apply for parole in February, just weeks before the March 15 state election. If he is released it could draw more attention to the school sex scandal leading into the election.
Opposition education spokesman David Pisoni said the Premier should explain whether the request, on July 1, was politically motivated.
Parole Board chair Frances Nelson, QC, said the government had "never" before made a representation to the board.
However, a spokesman for the Premier last night said the government had no plans to make a representation about the matter to the Parole Board.
"The Premier's office was simply trying to determine what process existed if a person wished to make representations to the Parole Board," he said.
One of Mr Weatherill's advisers passed on the request to the Attorney-General's office on behalf of the Premier's chief-of-staff, Simon Blewett.
Mr Blewett has come under fire for failing to inform Mr Weatherill about the original arrest of Harvey .
"Simon asked - Can you find out if any representations can be made to the Parole Board about its discretion to release him on parole, and if so by whom and by what process?" the request, obtained under freedom of information, read.
Representations are submissions arguing for or against a prisoner's potential release on parole and can be made by victims or any other member of the public.
Ms Nelson told The Advertiser the board was an independent body.
"There's nothing to stop them, but I wouldn't have thought it would be appropriate myself," she said.
"In terms of suitability for release, we have information provided from a whole lot of sources - prisons, sentencing remarks, psychologist reports, rehabilitation programs and the police.
"I wouldn't think there was anything the government could say that would add to that. I wouldn't think the government has sources of information about suitability for release we wouldn't have. But everybody else can so I suppose they could too."
Harvey, of Largs North, was convicted in February 2012 of unlawful sexual intercourse with a young girl in 2010 while she was attending his out-of-hours-school care program at a western suburbs primary school. He was sentenced to six years' jail with a non-parole term of two years.
Last October it was revealed that parents at the school where Harvey worked had not been told about the incident .
This sparked a seven-month royal commission by former Supreme Court justice Bruce Debelle and has since been the source of political pressure for the government .
Mr Pisoni said Mr Weatherill must explain why his office was contemplating getting involved in the parole process for Harvey.
"Does his chief of staff take a personal interest in pending paroles of all criminals or was this a special case?" Mr Pisoni said. "If it is a special case, where was the Premier's staff interest when the matter occurred in 2010?
"Was this request politically motivated, considering the timing of his potential release? If not, what other reasons are there for this unprecedented interest?"
The parole of life sentence prisoners must be approved by the government's executive council, but this condition does not apply to other prisoners, such as Harvey. Ms Nelson has strongly criticised this policy because South Australia is the only mainland state where such a condition applies.

www.adelaidenow.com.au (1-10-2013)

Paedophile worked at two other public schools

A man convicted of raping a girl at an Adelaide out-of-school hours care program in 2010 worked in at least two other public schools, the Education Department has revealed.
Mark Christopher Harvey was convicted earlier this year of unlawful sexual intercourse with a girl who attended the OSHC program he ran at a public school in the north-western suburbs in 2010.
The Education Department today said the man worked for OSHC or Vacation Care programs at two other public schools in suburban Adelaide from 1994 to 2006.
A statement from the department, supplied after a request by adelaidenow, says the man also worked "for brief periods" as a School Services Officer at two of the three public schools on short-term temporary contracts in 1998 and 2010.
As reported by adelaidenow early last month, the man also worked in OSHC and Vacation Care at an Adelaide Catholic school between 2000 and 2004.
The department has written to parents at each school to inform them and outline available support services.
A spokesman for the department said it was "still seeking some final details and their verification" about other aspects of the man's employment history.
"One issue is that as OSHC is run by Governing Councils, they hold the employment records rather than the department, but we are working to recover these," he said.
"Similarly records of employment in the non-government education sectors are not available to DECD."

www.adelaidenow.com.au (12-12-2012)

Western-suburbs school parents meet with Premier Jay Weatherill over sex abuse by Mark Christopher Harvey

The governing council at a school where the rape of a student was kept secret was given incorrect advice by the Education Department that they should not tell parents about the incident, Premier Jay Weatherill says.
Mr Weatherill met with the council tonight after a parent asked him to attend a meeting at the school, in the western suburbs.
After the 90-minute meeting he said parents were "searching for answers" and that it seemed there had been a "miscommunication about the actual advice" given by the Education Department to not tell the school community.
"The governing council was given information, it is just that the information they were given appears to be the wrong information and we need to find out how that happened," Mr Weatherill told adelaidenow.
"Obviously it's at the level of the department because they (the council) were relying on advice from the department."
Mr Weatherill urged parents not to blame governing councillors for a cover up.
"They were acting on the basis of advice not to inform parents and that's something that the broader parent community needs to understand," he said.
"I was very clear with them that we don't blame them."
Mr Weatherill said some parents were "very angry" and there was "a lot of blame being sheeted around" but others wanted to move forward.
"People's confidence has been shaken by this incident," he said.
"An awful thing has happened to this school community. There was a lot of grief about what has happened."
It's the first time Mr Weatherill visited the school since news broke about a fortnight ago that former out-of-school-hours care director Mark Christopher Harvey raped a young girl in his care in December 2010.
Members of the governing council, a volunteer panel of parents, say they wanted to tell the school community about the sexual assault but were pressured into keeping it secret by the Education Department.
The State Government has launched an investigation into the case.
Mr Weatherill, who was Education Minister at the time, has said his office was made aware of the assault when Harvey was arrested in early December 2010 but the information was never personally relayed to him.

www.adelaidenow.com.au (12-11-2012)

Convicted paedophile Mark Christopher Harvey worked at Catholic school before arrest

A paedophile at the centre of a State Government controversy worked at an Adelaide Catholic school for almost five years before he was convicted it has emerged.
Catholic Education SA has written to parents at the school after being informed by the Government on Friday night that Mark Christopher Harvey was a former employee.
Harvey was convicted in February this year of unlawful sexual intercourse with a girl in late 2010 at an out-of-school hours care program he ran at a public school.
Parents were not told of the incident until last Friday, sparking public outrage and prompting the government to launch an independent investigation.
Catholic Education provided a copy of the letter to adelaidenow but removed the name of the Catholic school involved.
The letter says Harvey worked at an out-of-school hours care program at the Catholic school from May to December 2000.
He then left the OSHC but continued to work at the school's vacation care program until the end of 2004.
The letter says "there is no information to suggest that Harvey acted inappropriately" while employed at the school.
Catholic Education is searching records of families who used the OSHC and vacation care programs during the time Harvey worked there and plans to contact them personally.
"Even though no concerns have been raised about Harvey's contact with students (at the school) our practice is always to inform parents/caregivers when matters such as this are raised," the letter says.
Yesterday Premier Jay Weatherill said staff at out-of-school hours care services were employed by the governing councils of public schools - panels of parents - not the school itself and so the parents were "ultimately" responsible for decisions about those staff.
Mr Weatherill was responding to questions about whose responsibility it was to inform parents at an Adelaide primary school about the rape of a student by the out-of-school hours care program director.
However, Mark Colley, chairman of the Rose Park School governing council - not the school where the sexual abuse occurred - this morning told ABC 891 Breakfast radio he had been told by an Education Department chief executive that the department would take back responsibility for such staff.
"We've been having that running battle for the best part of 18 months and the department has only just recently come back to us and said they would resume the employment control, if you like, of out of school hours care people and we're just waiting for confirmation of that," he said.
"This obviously throws it (the Premier's comments) into a different light."
"I spoke to the (department) Deputy Chief Executive last Friday who was to put it in writing to me (but) I still haven't got the letter."
A spokeswoman for the Department for Education said the department did not operate out-of-school-hours care services.
"OSHC services are run in the form of two basic models, the most common being that the Governing Council operates the service, employing the staff and the school provides the day-to-day administration," the spokeswoman said.
"The Rose Park Primary School Governing Council has had several discussions with the department and those discussions are continuing."
Mark Christopher Harvey was the director of an out-of-school hours care program when he was arrested for the sexual abuse of a girl in his care in late 2010.
Mr Weatherill was Education Minister at the time.
An email to his office said the school and Education Department were "working on a message to go home today" to parents but the message was never sent.
Opposition education spokesman David Pisoni called on Mr Weatherill to take responsibility for the failure to notify parents.
"First Minister Portolesi blamed the police for the secrecy, then Premier Weatherill blamed his chief of staff for not telling him, now he is blaming the parent volunteers of the governing council," he said.
Former Supreme Court Justice Bruce Debelle yesterday began an investigation into the case.
Education Minister Grace Portolesi has promised to release the final report of the investigation publicly in full.
However, she said "any information regarding ongoing investigations or identifying children will be removed".
Ms Portolesi said the investigation would "consider the actions of all relevant agencies and make recommendations relating to the actions of the parties involved and the procedures and processes that should be in place in these circumstances".

www.adelaidenow.com.au (6-11-2012)

Inquiry starts into secret child-sex case

A child-sex abuse case at an Adelaide primary school that was kept secret from parents for almost two years has led to a promise from South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill to answer questions about the case.
Mr Weatherill, who was education minister when a worker at the school was arrested in 2010, has apologised to the parents involved and said they had a right to know about the matter.
"I certainly offer my apologies to parents," the premier told reporters on Monday.
"We will get to the bottom of why this happened, and we will make sure it won't happen again."
Mr Weatherill said while his chief of staff at the time was informed of the case by email, he was never told about it.
The case involved out-of-school-hours care director Mark Christopher Harvey, who was jailed earlier this year for having unlawful sexual intercourse with a young girl.
Last week the SA government appointed retired Supreme Court judge Bruce Debelle to inquire into the case and find out why parents weren't informed of Harvey's arrest.
He will consider the actions of all relevant agencies and ministers and make recommendations on procedures and processes to be used in the future.
Mr Weatherill said Mr Debelle began his investigation on Monday and that he'd be provided with any information he required.
"If he asks questions, we'll answer them," the premier said.
Mr Weatherill said police were also looking into what advice they provided to Scouts SA after it emerged Harvey had been also involved with the youth group before his arrest.
He said that raised further concerns about screening and what should have occurred and what did occur in relation to advice given to Scouts SA.


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