By Dee McLachlan
There is the expectation of fairness in Australia… “Australians all let us rejoice…” But there is no rejoicing for many thousands of children and their protective parents.
This story I’m about to tell you is antithetical to fair. It’s about deep corruption and criminality against a child. It is about how certain police officers felt it their business to destroy a child’s life.
In desperation, I began a series of videos recently to explain the modus operandi and the many tricks used against children and protective parents. Then as more people contacted me, I was to hear more truly distressing accounts of child stealing and judicial misconduct on every level. It seems the very system has festered beyond redemption.
Something must be done. I have – again — contacted the prime minister’s office; the South Australian premier, attorney-general, and child protection minister for phone meetings. They need to be briefed, and I will no longer be brushed off.
Now please hear about this specific case.
State Abduction of a Child
There is no other way to describe what happened in this case, but “abduction”. I wrote about the offending police officer in June 2019, in an article entitled, “Removal of Child from Good Mum Traceable to Corrupt Female Police Officer”. I referred to her as ‘Officer Demeter’ (not her real name).
There is a law in South Australia: s80 of the Criminal Law Consolidation Act 1935 SA, with regard to the Abduction of a Child, that states (1) “Any person who (a) unlawfully, either by force or fraud …(c) deprives any parent …having the lawful care of the child … shall be guilty of an offence and liable to be imprisoned for a term not exceeding seven years.”
For this law to be valid there needs to be clear “fraud”; fraud being defined as “false representation of a matter of fact … or by concealment of what should have been disclosed … and is intended to deceive…,” and “used to gain a legal advantage or accomplish a specific crime.”
Various persons cooperated to remove this young girl and damage her future; potentially robbing years of the childhood she deserves and wishes; and by doing so also robbing years of motherhood from the mother. (I hear these accounts all the time.)
And for Officer Demeter and her cohort to be prosecuted for the abduction of a child, they must, according to s80, have “deprived” the parent of “having the lawful care of the child.” Well, the child was in the LAWFUL CARE of her mother, per a 2018 order of the Family Court, and the means in which the child was removed was unequivocally orchestrated by means of deception.
The Federal Court Order
After a long and very expensive Family Court trial the mother was awarded sole custody of the child.
Then, just over one month after the Family Court Orders were delivered in 2018, the child was deliberately injured during a weekend visitation to the father. I have heard the child’s account as she bravely described to a medical practitioner what terrible things were done to her – and I absolutely believe her. She described how she had been threatened — with her and her mother’s life — to not speak out.
The injury was reported, but sadly, this corrupt female police officer, and whoever she enlisted into this conspiracy, HALTED all investigations and thereafter focused on taking the child from her mum. You see, a child injury report means the Department for Child Protection (DCP) can step in, which they did — turning a federal custody order into a state matter via a trick in Family Law (s69ZK). Maybe someone didn’t like the orders?
As soon as the child’s wounds had healed, and less than three months after these orders were delivered, she was removed — taken from school while the mother was putting her case to Youth Court. To note: as the child had feared being separated from her mum, the Family Court Judge had also ordered that the child was in no danger of being removed from her mother’s care.
I declare that various people plotted against the mother from the get-go. For two years they have been trying to SWITCH CUSTODY – against the child’s wishes – to reunify the child with her father, the very person she claimed abused her. And the switch of custody is taking place in the informal and so-called ‘Reunification Court’, with the exclusion of the mother. This stands in contempt of the Federal Court Orders.
Mother and daughter have now been APART for two and a half years, and egregious restrictions have been placed on them to keep them apart. They see each other for only 2 hours a month in a room watched on by others. I cannot imagine how degrading, and brutal this must be for them both. And what must the child think, as the actions of authorities indoctrinate her into believing that her mother is ‘dangerous’ and must have done something terribly wrong?
Fortunately, I believe that this child is particularly intelligent and knows exactly what is going on, but is powerless without the one person that she trusted to protect her.
Officer Demeter and the Deception
When I wrote the article about Officer Demeter back in 2019, I did not know some critical information that would surface later, which reveals how the game that was viciously played against this child.
Officer Demeter came into the picture when two items of clothing that were to be tested (for DNA etc.) by CIB in Adelaide were mysteriously removed. Demeter declared nothing could be tested now until she had interviewed the child. She dilly-dallied for weeks, and after the Family Court trial was in progress, she conducted an interview. [In my original article, I said the interview was “only days before the start of trial,” but that is incorrect. It was conducted mid-trial.]
After the interview, Demeter said to the mother that the child passed the truth test and was very brave, but there was “nothing to go by.” The mother never knew what her daughter had disclosed, (she did not talk about it with the girl, in deference to the rule of “No coaching”). So Mum assumed that her daughter’s disclosures must have been inconsequential.
But the interview is central to the deception, as I shall reveal.
With the mother having sole custody, life moved on. As I said, just a month after the orders were delivered the child was intentionally injured. And guess what? The same female policewoman that interviewed the child was back. Officer Demeter then worked with DCP staff to immediately HALT the investigation into the assault (against all regulations and admitted to in documents later). DCP staff also ignored medical professionals and went against the child’s version.
However, it was after the child unexpectedly told her teacher at school about the abuses and injury that Demeter went into high gear. She began actively colluding with the father to get the child, and then entered fabricated accusations against the mother into the system, making her out to be the problem — provided the fraudulent grounds for the DCP to remove the child.
Enter Detective Lemon
The mum had been separated from her daughter for close to eight months when she asked the South Australian Police to please investigate Officer Demeter, and whether her daughter had disclosed any abuse in her police interview.
That is when Detective Lemon (not his real name) came onto the scene, assigned by SAPOL’s Internal Investigation Section to investigate. He visited the mum around New Year’s Eve to tell her so, but seemed completely uninterested in being provided with additional evidence and information. A month later he called on the phone to say that he had completed his investigation and that her daughter had NOT DISCLOSED ANY ABUSE. He admitted to not having viewed the video but had discussed it with Demeter and allegedly read her notes.
There was nothing to be done, and the file was closed – no matter how many times we wrote to Lemon’s superiors to question the malfeasance.
Let me make it clear, the DCP’s removing and keeping the child is based on their assertion that the child has NEVER been abused. And because the mother had supporting her daughter’s view (that she was abused), then she must be a danger to her daughter – and therefore they must be kept apart until the child is 18, even if the child desperately wants to go back home to her mum. Please re-read these two sentences several times to fully understand the true nature of what has unfolded. I have learned that it is a well-honed procedure, perhaps worldwide.
Finally Exposed – The Police Interview
In the back of the mother’s mind was: What if her daughter had disclosed something in the police interview? Every attempt to get the police interview through an FOI had been blocked and so it was around July 2019 that a judge finally granted the mother’s request to subpoena the video.
The mother was not prepared for what she was about to witness on viewing the 73-minute police interview of her daughter. It took her several hours to call me, as she was so distressed and unable to watch more than about 15 minutes. It took her several days to view the full video and comprehend what her daughter had gone through and had described.
At this point, the state was asking for guardianship, yet no one in authority was willing to watch the video, with the DCP insisting that abuse had NEVER occurred. Mind-boggling.
But the facts are the facts, and can no longer be disputed.
I will not outline what abuse the child described but can say she chronicled what happened to her in the most innocent way, including various versions of extreme abuses and versions of rape. It appears she described these as a child would, not knowing exactly what to call things, nor fully understanding what was really happening to her – taking very long moments to pluck up the courage to speak out and explain. (Don’t forget, she spoke of death threats if she told anyone.)
In this interview, the fraud and deception of Officer Demeter were truly exposed. She lured the child into a false sense of security, telling her over and over again:
“You can use any words… This is a safe place, you can tell me anything… What don’t you want to say? …use your big voice, your big brave voice …It’s safe for you to tell me the truth …tell me the truth …what happened then? …tell me everything you remember.”
And the child told her the truth; told the officer everything.
And what did Demeter do? She never entered the abuses into the system (it is mandatory to do so); never reported the abuses to the Department for Child Protection (DCP), and did not inform the Family Court.
Then months later, after the new injury was reported, Officer Demeter was back. She not only halted the investigation into that assault by the father, but she colluded with him. Demeter was the one person who had known the truth all along. The child had told her of terrible things in the interview in late-2017 — THREE YEARS AGO. But Demeter concealed those crimes and began writing reports into the system that the mother was delusional — signifying that the abuses could have never happened.
Her actions of fraud enabled the unlawful removal – the abduction — of the child.
One can only hope that Officer Demeter will be prosecuted for s241— Impeding investigation of offenses and assisting offenders; s243—Fabricating, altering or concealing evidence; s14—Criminal neglect (where a child suffers harm as a result of an act), and s80 — all serious offenses with long-term imprisonment if convicted.
But there’s another chapter to this sorry saga.
Detective Lemon’s Moment in the Sun
The truth is always grounded, but a lie has to be remembered.
You see, Detective Lemon, the person investigating Officer Demeter, had confirmed to the Mum in early 2019 that no abuse had ever happened. He had informed all his superiors, including the Police Commissioner and presumably the minister that all was in order. He had told the mother in a phone conversation (which she recorded to protect her legal rights) that he had investigated, and that no abuse was ever disclosed. Of course, we now know that is a blatant lie and cover-up. (Note: cover-up is a crime.)
Recently in September 2020, the mother finally got through to him (using a private number). She again recorded the conversation and asked Detective Lemon about the investigation. Now he declared that he had not done the investigation, and told her it was up to the police ombudsman. However, he must have told his superiors that he had.
There may be malicious attempts to discredit the child now – but I believe that will be impossible.
Who Will End Their ‘Life Sentence’
Sir James Munby in Re J (A Child)  EWHC 2694 (Fam) paragraph 28, in a child care proceedings case, describes the separation by a court of a loving mother-daughter relationship being equivalent to a life sentence to both. It changes both lives forever, and leads to drastic life-long consequences. (I thank Pastor Paul and Graeme for sending me this UK case.)
I call the case I have been discussing a criminal abduction of a child. It is nothing less. (Actually, it is much more, as I have omitted dozens of deceitful things that took place.)
In sum, the mother had lawful care of her daughter, and by fraud, her child was taken from her care. Had Officer Demeter done the right thing, the mother would have not even gone through a family court trial, and her daughter would NEVER have been removed from her care.
How many people are involved now in this abduction? Is there a greater conspiracy to defeat the course of justice? No one can continue to claim this child was never abused. Sexual exploitation by the father had been substantiated years before by Families SA investigators. And in 2019, a doctor who had specialized in trauma wrote, about her…
“…flying in the face of 3 years of consistent reporting by a child …This is professional misconduct of the highest order …and would easily reach the threshold …requiring urgent Ministerial investigation.”
This caring and protective mother has been the only honest person here, diligently following the law, and she is still being denied the lawful custody of her child. Last week she was prevented from attending a public function at the girl’s school – as though she were some kind of ‘undesirable’. Like vermin of society.
The Family Court Orders Need To stand
We cannot, as a society, tolerate such pernicious disregard to our most vulnerable. Tay-payer funds have been used to destroy these families. There has been a cloak of secrecy over children’s court matters for decades — mandated by s121 of the Family Law Act to ostensibly protect the child’s privacy, but it conceals malfeasance. But South Australian officials know to whom I refer. So, I urge you to share this article widely and contact your local member and the relevant government officials, asking them to please fulfill their duty of care to this child and to the many other children in similar predicaments.
Abusing a child is a heinous act; separating and isolating a child unwarrantedly or unlawfully from a protective parent is a torturous and psychologically abusive act; forcing reunification between a child with his or her abuser is criminal and unconscionable.
This has to stop. This life sentence can end with the stroke of a pen. The young girl must go home and Officer Demeter and others need to be indicted by the DPP.