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 victims of crime compo for gangsters, yes or no
Posted: Oct 6 2008, 01:45 AM

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Compo for Moran mate
September 29, 2008

An underworld figure who survived Melbourne's gangland war has been awarded $7500 in crimes compensation.

Herbert John Wrout, a mate of murdered crime patriarch Lewis Moran, has also won his battle to have his $880 barrister's bill covered by taxpayers.

Wrout, who has been accused of drug running and has a conviction for possessing a pistol, had been drinking with Moran when he was shot dead in 2004 at the Brunswick Club.

Wrout, now 66, was critically injured in the ambush.

He has since obtained top-tier financial support from the Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal.

On top of the cash payout, the tribunal also covered the cost of fitting Wrout's temporary place of residence with security doors.

His pharmaceutical and counselling costs are covered for six years from 2005.

Wrout yesterday confirmed he had been awarded the assistance for "five bullet holes and a shortened lifespan".

VOCAT had initially refused to pay his legal costs related to the trial of Evangelos Goussis, who was convicted of Moran's murder and the intentional injury of Wrout.

But it backed down after Wrout challenged its refusal at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

He faces further charges in the Melbourne Magistrates' Court next month.

Wrout wants his legal fees covered for that appearance too, saying VOCAT should cover costs incurred by all successful claimants in criminal matters after they become victims of crime.

"For the trouble I got into in the last four years I don't believe I am responsible," he said.

During a hearing for drug trafficking charges in 2005, a court heard Wrout had suffered concentration lapses and would cry easily.

He was considered unfit to give evidence in the Goussis trial, with a judge accepting that he had suffered post-traumatic amnesia.

Wrout has a conviction for possessing a pistol and was at one stage accused of drug running, although a magistrate threw out the charge.[SIZE=7]


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Posted: Oct 19 2008, 04:00 AM

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It's a difficult question to answer. Being part of the underworld means beatings shootings etc are an occupational hazard so why should they get a red cent? Herbert Wrout was involved in the drugs trade with Moran so............

On the other hand the families of some of these people are sometimes in the situation not through choice so.............
Posted: Oct 19 2008, 09:30 PM

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GANGLAND widows have bagged a fortune in compensation for their notorious underworld partners’ deaths. A “gangland pension” of up to half a million dollars has been paid to women who lived high on criminal profit.Yet genuine victims of crime have been denied compensation

The jackpot, totalling up to $493,000 for crime families, has been kept secret from taxpayers, who paid the bill.

A Sunday Herald Sun investigation has uncovered public payouts to wives and girlfriends of gangsters Alphonse Gangitano, Victor Peirce, and Mark, Jason and Lewis Moran.

Victim advocates are angry and old-school gangsters sneer that those claiming compo are soft.

Underworld matriarch Kath Pettingill said: “In the old days you wouldn’t have dreamed of going to government for money. Death was an occupational hazard.”

Mrs Pettingill, who has buried three sons, said she did not seek compensation when the last of them, Victor Peirce, was shot in Port Melbourne in May, 2002.

Crime Victims Support Association president Noel McNamara said “gangsters’ molls” were picking the pockets of genuine victims.

“This is ludicrous,” he said. “Live by the sword, die by the sword.”

Mr McNamara said the women “exploit the scheme, are protected by its secrecy and are experts when there’s easy money to be made”.

The investigation found:

WENDY Peirce and her four children received $153,000 in compensation and other payouts when partner and accused cop-killer Victor was executed.

VIRGINIA Strazdas received a $20,000 gift from taxpayers after gangster boyfriend Lewis Moran was shot in a Brunswick pokies pub.

JUDY Moran received $20,000 when son Jason — drug dealer, standover man and killer — was executed at a junior footy clinic. And she was paid up to $50,000 as part of a family claim over son Mark Moran’s death.

TRISHA Moran, widow of Jason, pocketed up to $50,000 for his death.

The families of “Lygon St Godfather” Alphonse Gangitano and Mark Moran are believed to have been each paid up to $100,000.

The Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal refused to disclose payouts.

It is not known if payments have been made to Graham “The Munster” Kinniburgh’s family or Victor Peirce’s surviving lover and her son, or to Carl Williams for having been shot in the stomach.

And embattled lawyer Zarah Garde-Wilson refused to say if she had claimed crimes compensation over slain boyfriend, Lewis Caine.

The widows defended the payments.

Ms Peirce said: “People say I have been living off the money Victor was supposed to have made from crime. But what have the kids done wrong?”

Virginia Gangitano reportedly didn’t know where her husband obtained his money and she never asked.

A Justice Department spokeswoman said laws guided the tribunal on compensation claims.

“An applicant’s character must be taken into account, including past criminal activity,” the spokeswoman said.

Critics of the system have called for open court compensation deliberations.

Mrs Pettingill said part of the money Victor’s widow, Wendy, received was paid to his children — the two youngest were at school at the time of his death. She said she understood the argument when young children were still dependent.

“Jason Moran’s twins were in the vehicle with him at the footy clinic when he was shot and they would have suffered, so I can see why they should get something,” she said.

But while gangland families count their public cash, innocent victims remain penniless.

Melissiah Diabel, whose mother and baby sister’s disappearance is one of the state’s most mysterious unsolved crimes, was recently refused compensation.

“I was refused Crime Compensation from the Government over the murder of my mother and sister 27 years ago,” she said.

“I was told there was currently no proof Louise and Charmian Faulkner were deceased and that any crime had been committed.”

Ms Diabel has spent more than $60,000 in a quest to solve the mystery. Max Coulton was three when his mother was murdered in Melbourne and her naked body dumped in Elwood.

Mr Coulton, 19, was denied a payout for trauma because he may have been in Queensland when told of her death.

Train drivers, such as Arthur Enver, used as executioners by suicide victims are routinely denied compensation for pain and suffering.

Sharlene McKenna’s daughter, Charli, was stillborn at 22 weeks after a motorist smashed into her car in March last year.

Ms McKenna qualified as the “primary victim”, but her bid for compensation as a “related victim” to her daughter was refused — because her baby wasn’t born.

Postmaster Gilbert Icke, shot during a hold-up, at first received only $231 for clothes. After public outrage, he received about $2500 — for petrol and other expenses.

Published in The Herald Sun August 05, 2007 12:00am

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