Monday, September 24, 2012

Melbourne bashing victim calls for ticket inspector inquiry

FOUR undercover ticket inspectors allegedly involved in the brutal bashing of a man at Dennis train station haven't been investigated internally.

Michael Aravopoulos, 49, claims he was punched, sat on, restrained and had his head pushed into the bitumen after being followed off the Hurstbridge line train in April 2008.

The disability pensioner, who spent 12 days in hospital, claims he produced a validated ticket and pension card when asked by a Connex officer, and was tormented as he tried to get the card back.

Two of the inspectors are employed as authorised officers by current train operator Metro, one works in a non-enforcement role and one resigned in 2010.

Mr Aravopoulos said the Department of Transport should investigate.  "There's a cover-up," he said.

Responding to a question on notice from Greens MP Greg Barber, Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder said Victoria Police told the DOT it would investigate.  "So DOT did not conduct an investigation. DOT was not advised of the allegations of excessive use of force by the authorised officers at the time police initially investigated the matter," Mr Mulder told Parliament.

Mr Barber told the Herald Sun that authorised officers had police-like powers but "nothing like the oversight of police".  "Department of Transport needs to run its own investigation because it has a different set of responsibilities for supervision of authorised officers," he said.

Department spokeswoman Jo Weeks said it had co-operated with the police investigation.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Spammers: Don't bother. Irrelevant comments won't be published