Brenden Abbott : biography
Brenden James Abbott (born 8 May 1962) is an Australian bank robber who was branded the Postcard Bandit by the Western Australian Police to attract news media attention. The bank robberies he has been attributed as masterminding, yielded as much as A$6 million, though a significant proportion of that amount was unrecoverable.
Over the last 13 years he has been regularly transferred between Woodford Correctional Centre and Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre, and held in both mainstream and Supermax conditions. He was moved to Brisbane Correctional Centre in August 2011, and is detained under severe, Supermax-style conditions.Steven Wardill (9 September 2011). . The Courier Mail. Retrieved on 30 October 2012.
A film about Abbott, The Postcard Bandit, was made for television by Nine Films/Pacific Coast Entertainment in 2003 and released on DVD on 22 March 2005.Buchanan, Matt. (26 May 2003). . Sydney Morning Herald.
A 1994 warrant for questioning remains in place with Adelaide Criminal Prosecutions Branch for one count of armed robbery in Glenelg, South Australia. In mid-2008, Brenden Abbott applied for an interstate transfer to South Australia to address the outstanding warrant. The application followed official statements by Adelaide detective Sid Thomas, in The Adelaide Advertiser in 2008, that detectives were travelling to Queensland to question Abbott at Woodford Correctional Centre, although no such interview has ever occurred. In December 2010, Abbott's application for a South Australian transfer was approved by the Queensland Attorney General, and the South Australian Attorney General's decision is pending. On 12 June 2011, Adelaide Advertiser reporter Nigel Hunt incorrectly reported that Abbott had filed for a Supreme Court Judicial Review regarding the application to transfer to face the charges.Nigel Hunt (12 June 2011). . The Sunday Mail. Retrieved on 30 October 2012. Hunt's story concludes with an unnamed source's suspicions that Abbott could have committed not just the one he is sought for questioning over, but multiple robberies in South Australia. The author of the book based on Abbott's life, Australian Outlaw, is currently the night-editor at The Adelaide Advertiser, and speculated in the book that Abbott had done robberies in South Australia, though the SA Police have never questioned him.
A former ward of the state of Western Australia, Abbott is a member of the Forgotten Australians and still suffers a range of anxiety and health-related problems, noted in semi-biographical work by Derek Pedley, Australian Outlaw. The hearing impaired boy was subjected to corporal punishment in solitary detention in November 1974, at age 12, in the specially-modified child torture cell at the now notorious, Hillston Boys Home. Abbott's last water colour, "," was painted after the national apology.
The biography also mentions his affliction with chronic supperative otitis media, a painful, recurrent middle-ear disease prevalent in , causing lifelong hearing loss and auditory processing delay, and an elevated risk of juvenile interaction with the criminal justice system. At earlier than one year of age Abbott had bilateral perforated ear drums and chronic recurrent bilateral effusion. Over the years that followed, he had repeated failed ear-drum grafts, with the last tympanoplasty taking place at age 13. As was the government practice at that time with little known about the condition and little concern for the well being and future of state wards, no additional education, medical, and communication support, no court and interrogation support, nor any appropriate rehabilitation services, were made available to the youth.
Abbott was on the run for six months in 1986/1987; as Australia's Most Wanted Man from 1989-1995 (five and a half years), and from 1997-1998 (six months). He was eventually caught in Darwin, Northern Territory in 1998 and is serving a 23 year sentence in Queensland for bank robberies and the 1997 prison escape. After serving two years of his current sentence in solitary confinement, he sued the Queensland Government for mistreatment.Townsend, Ian, . The World Today. 20 October 2000. He was released from solitary confinement in May 2004 and returned there on a Maximum Security Order in April 2006, after he requested medical attention three times in 12 months, which the authorities deemed suspicious. After years in mainstream, Abbott was again returned to Supermax solitary confinement in August 2008 and then released back into mainstream detention in the days preceding a judicial review hearing into his back-to-back Maximum Security Orders, in October 2009.
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