Offenders tracking during outage queried
WEST Australians were left in the dark when dozens of offenders, some with serious convictions including dangerous sex offences, were unable to be tracked following the recent Telstra outage, according to Opposition corrective services spokesman and Dawesville MLA Zak Kirkup.
Mr Kirkup claimed it was incomprehensible the State Government did not alert the community to the dangers posed by offenders able to roam the community without being able to be tracked.
“If there is a telecommunications outage and offenders cannot be tracked, the community needs to be made aware,’’ he said.
“In Parliament, it was revealed 81 offenders with trackable ankle bracelets had been disconnected from monitoring as a result of the outage. “The question must be asked: why did it take questioning in Parliament for this information to be made public?”
But Corrective Services Minister Fran Logan said it was ridiculous and dangerous for Mr Kirkup to suggest that offenders should be told how they were being monitored.
He said the offenders did not know if the Telstra outage had affected their device.
He said the offenders were continually tracked by satellite, all the location information was stored and when the Telstra outage was resolved, all that data immediately returned to the Department and showed there were no breaches in the strict conditions.
“The Department also has a multi-pronged approach to monitoring these offenders so as soon as it was clear there was an issue with the Telstra network, the Department quickly put in place its contingency plans,” Mr Logan said.
“We will not reveal those plans because of security concerns just as we will not tell them how they are being monitored.”