Search for missing teen Stephanie Mackliley

Source: State of Victoria Police

Friday, 18 September 2020 10:09

Police are appealing for public assistance to help find missing teenager Stephanie Mackliley.

The 15-year-old was last seen leaving her Coburg North home about 1.30pm today.

Police and family hold concerns for her welfare due to a medical condition.

Stephanie is described about 170cm tall with shoulder-length blonde hair and was last seen wearing a white shirt, black hoodie, blue jeans and white runners.

It’s believed she was planning to go to Sydney Road, Brunswick.

Police have released an image of Stephanie in the hope someone recognises her and is able to provide information on her whereabouts.

Anyone with information is urged to call Fawkner Police Station on 9355 6000.

Leonie Johnson

Media Officer


‘Blazing talent’ Kate Mulvany wins top prize for women playwrights

Source: State Library of NSW

Hailed by the judges as a ‘blazing talent’, stage and screen writer/actor Kate Mulvany has won the coveted Mona Brand Award for 2020 – Australia’s only prize for women stage and screen writers.

A prolific playwright, screenwriter, poet and novelist, Kate Mulvany OAM was awarded the $30,000 Mona Brand Award for Women Stage and Screen Writers for her extensive body of work comprising more than 30 plays over a 25-year career. 

Kate’s acclaimed adaptation of Ruth Park’s The Harp in the South trilogy (Sydney Theatre Company) is among her recent work. Her original feminist piece The Mares played to rave reviews at the Tasmanian Theatre Company in 2019. 

The $10,000 Early Career Writer Award went to Anchuli Felicia King for her work White Pearl (Royal Court, 2019), described by the judges as “sharp, far-reaching and urgent. It extends and emboldens the representation of Asian women with complexity and resonance.” 

The Mona Brand Award is offered biennially thanks to the generous bequest to the NSW State Library Foundation from the trailblazing Australian playwright Mona Brand (who also wrote under the name Alexis Fox). 

Read the media release

Read the judges’ comments

Speeding motorcycle intercepted at Para Hills West

Source: South Australia Police

A motorcyclist’s bike has been impounded for 28 days after he was caught speeding at Para Hills West this afternoon.

Police were conducting speed detection on Main North Road, Para Hills West at 4.30pm on Friday 18 September and clocked the Yamaha motorcycle travelling at 192 km/h in the 80 km/h zone.

A heavy vehicle entered the roadway ahead of the speeding bike, causing the rider to brake harshly and come to an almost stop.  At this time, police were able to intercept the motorcycle and remove the key from the ignition.

The rider, a 31-year-old Mawson Lakes man, was reported for excessive speed and riding at a speed and manner dangerous to the public.

He will be summonsed to appear in court at a later date.  The motorcycle was impounded for 28 days.

Arrest – Historical sex offences – Tiwi Islands

Source: Northern Territory Police

Northern Territory Police have arrested a 66-year-old man on the Tiwi Islands in relation to alleged historical sexual assaults, dating back from 1992 through to 1997.

Detectives from the Sex Crime Unit have spent several days on the Islands investigating the allegations by the two women, who were aged 6 and 16 at the time.

Today, police arrested the man and transported him back to Darwin.  

He was charged with:

  • 2 x have unlawful carnal knowledge
  • 1 x indecent treatment of child under 10 years
  • 4 x sexual intercourse without consent
  • 1 x deprivation of liberty

The man is due to appear in Darwin Local Court on 24 September 2020.

Large weapon haul seized in Melbourne’s south

Source: State of Victoria Police

Friday, 18 September 2020 07:23

Prahran Divisional Response Unit detectives have seized 16 firearms, prohibited weapons and drugs as part of Operation Mint.

A 41-year-old man was arrested at his Coolac Street address in Cheltenham yesterday morning.

After searching his home, police allegedly located 16 firearms including long arms, assault rifle gel blasters, handgun gel blasters and home-made pen pistols.

A number of prohibited weapons were located including knuckledusters, Tasers, nun chucks, firearm silencers, flick knives, batons and slingshots.

Police also located a small hydroponic set-up, a small amount of prescription medication and methylamphetamine.

The Cheltenham man has been charged with 33 offences including possess handgun, possess imitation firearm, possess prohibited weapon, manufacture prohibited weapon, cultivate and traffick cannabis, possess drug of dependence and deal property suspected as being proceeds of crime.

He was bailed to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on 23 February.

Detectives also executed a search warrant in Montana Drive, Werribee and arrested a 38-year-old man this morning.

A search of his house allegedly revealed a small amount of methylamphetamines, heroin, cannabis, jungle juice and valium.

The Werribee man was charged with 28 offences including trafficking heroin and methylamphetamine, drug possession, possess amyl nitrite and possess proceeds of crime.

He was bailed to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on 23 February.

Operation Mint targeted illicit drug activity in the Port Phillip area.

Leonie Johnson

Media advisor


Statement regarding comments on ABF officer workloads

Source: Australian Customs and Border Protection Service

Recent claims made by individuals that there are large numbers of Australian Border Force officers operating at our ports and airports who are not busy at the moment are patently false.

Officers from the Australian Border Force work extremely hard every year to protect the community from various threats and to facilitate legitimate trade and travel, however this year has been particularly busy with the many impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While there has obviously been a reduction in international passenger movements, the number of ABF officers required to process international passengers remains high due to the requirements associated with COVID-19 protocols.

Officers have also been surged to other priority areas. They are working tirelessly to provide various functions including customs, vessel clearance and organisational support for dedicated air freight services so that Australians have access to basic essentials.

The processing of thousands of travel exemption requests has also required a sustained surge of officers from across the organisation.

In 2019-20 we have processed 57.8 million air cargo consignments – up from 53 million in 2018-19.

From 1 February to 30 June this year, ABF officers have processed over 2.4 million incoming sea cargo consignments – an 89 per cent increase on the same period last year.

A number of ABF officers have been redeployed from the international airport to Cargo and Postal Operations to service the massive increase in air cargo which has surged as a result of restrictions on the eastern coast. They have been working around the clock in in these centres to:

prevent the export of essential goods needed in Australia, such as face masks, gloves and hand sanitizer, to prevent the spread the COVID-19

facilitate the import of these essential goods to prevent the spread of COVID-19

search for illegal items being sent through air and sea cargo and the post that continue to harm the Australian community such as narcotics.

In the first six months of 2020, ABF officers made over 9,800 detections of major drugs and precursors at the Australian border, a 19 per cent increase over the same period last year.

Our ABF officers also continue to facilitate the removal of non-citizens from Australia who have been convicted of very serious crimes such as child abuse, kidnapping and drug offences.

French drug courier jailed for WA airport heroin bust

Source: Australian Customs and Border Protection Service

A 55-year-old man was sentenced to four-and-a-half years’ jail by the Perth District Court yesterday (Thursday, 17 September) for importing approximately 179 grams of heroin wrapped in five pellets concealed inside his body.

The French national was arrested in Western Australia on 27 February 2020, after Australian Border Force (ABF) officers selected him for an examination when he arrived in Perth on a flight from Bangkok.

Nothing illegal was found in his luggage but swabs taken of his mobile phone allegedly revealed traces of LSD.

ABF officers then arranged for a non-medical body scan, which returned a positive indication of internal concealment.

The man was referred to the Australian Federal Police and was taken by ambulance to hospital, where he passed five pellets that weighed 270 grams.

The heroin inside weighed approximately 179 grams, which is worth approximately $89,500.

The seizure prevented approximately 1790 ‘street level’ deals reaching the Perth community.  

Forensic analysis by the AFP determined the drugs had a 67 per cent purity, which calculated the total pure weight of the heroin at 119.8 grams.

The 55-year-old pleaded guilty on 24 April to one count of importing a marketable quantity of a border controlled drug, contrary to section 307.2 of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth). 

His sentence was backdated to the day of his arrest and he will become eligible for parole in October 2022.

The man, who had been living in Thailand, claimed he was coming to Australia for a holiday. He will likely be deported on his release from prison.

Anyone with information about the importation of illicit drugs and precursors should contact BorderWatch at By reporting suspicious activities, you help protect Australia’s border. Information can be provided anonymously.

For free and confidential advice about alcohol and other drug treatment services, call the National Alcohol and Other Drug Hotline on 1800 250 015.

Further details into the initial arrests and vision from the time can be accessed from the original media release – French national charged over internal heroin importation.


Media enquiries:
AFP National Media: (02) 5126 9297

ABF Media: (02) 6264 2244

Hazard reduction burn in Booti Booti National Park

Source: New South Wales Environment and Heritage

The purpose of the 9-hectare burn is to reduce fuel loads in the area to protect Camp Elim and The Great Lakes Sailing Club in the event of a bushfire.

Smoke may be visible from towns in the area including Forster, Green Point, Pacific Palms and Coomba Park.

Traffic control will be in place on the Lakes Way between Camp Elim and the Great Lakes Sailing Club for the duration of the burn. Access to Sailing Club Road and Elim Road will be restricted.

The NPWS hazard reduction program for 2020 is focussed on essential burns to protect park neighbours, assets or significant habitat to ensure ongoing recovery of the wildlife impacted by the summer bushfires.

All burns across NSW will continue to be coordinated with the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) to ensure the impact on the community, including from smoke, are assessed at a regional level.

Details on specific burns will be made available in advance on the Rural Fire Service website, ‘Fires Near Me’ app, and on NPWS Alerts website.

For health information relating to smoke from bush fires and hazard reduction burning, visit NSW Health or the Asthma Foundation.

For up to date information on these, and other, planned hazard reduction activities, visit the Rural Fire Service.

Young Tasmanian Aboriginal Leaders Scholarships

Source: State of Tasmania Government

Premier of Tasmania – Young Tasmanian Aboriginal Leaders Scholarships

18 September 2020

Roger Jaensch, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs

The Tasmanian Government is continuing to deliver on our commitment to Reset the Relationship with Tasmanian Aboriginal communities with applications currently open for The Young Aboriginal Leaders Scholarship for 2020.

The Scholarship is an initiative of the Tasmanian Government to support aspiring Aboriginal leaders and promote career pathways with a scholarship program to enhance leadership and excellence.

There are two scholarships available in 2021 with a value of $2 500 each, with applications open to young Aboriginal people residing in Tasmania aged 15 to 29 years of age.

Scholarship applications close on Friday 6 November 2020, and I encourage anyone interested apply.

Information on the Scholarship Program, including the guidelines and details about how to apply are available by following this link, or by calling the Office of Aboriginal Affairs on 6165 8366, or emailing

Supporting our primary industries

Source: State of Tasmania Government

18 September 2020

Guy Barnett, Minister for Primary Industries and Water

It’s positive news that experienced agricultural workers will be permitted to enter Tasmania under strict COVID-Safe conditions to help fill the need for seasonal workers this upcoming season.

We are working hard to ensure as many Tasmanians as possible can fill these positions, but with an estimated 9000 workers required, it is clear that more are needed to complete the harvest and support our primary producers.

Importantly, the management of incoming workers will be based on public health advice and can only proceed in a COVID safe way. Workers can only come from non-affected areas and will be required to operate under strict conditions on their movement for 14 days, staying in their primary place of residence unless going to work, seeking medical care or essential supplies.

The workers will equally be operating under stringent COVID-Safe processes as part of the sector’s COVID-Safe workplace plans, and I commend the industry for the proactive work it has done in this important area.

Experienced and trained workers will play a significant role in supporting Tasmanian workers, many of which will be inexperienced at this work due to taking it up for the first time, and I am very pleased this resolution has been reached.

I thank Public Health and everyone in the industry for working closely together on the appropriate pathway forward.