‘Postcard Bandit’ fights WA extradition

Notorious prison escapee Brenden Abbott’s long legal fight will take its latest turn on Friday as his legal team attempt to block his extradition to Western Australia.


Lawyers for the so-called “Postcard Bandit” lodged documents in Brisbane on Wednesday for a Supreme Court review of a magistrate’s decision for him to be extradited to Perth.

Deputy Chief Magistrate Terry Gardiner on Tuesday ordered the newly paroled bank robber’s extradition to WA, where he could face another 16 years behind bars over a 1989 jailbreak.

But it was suspended soon after, pending the application for a Supreme Court review, which was lodged by Abbott’s legal team on Wednesday afternoon.

The application seeks to have Magistrate Gardiner’s order granting the 53-year-old’s extradition revoked and then the extradition application itself dismissed outright.

The hearing will be held in Brisbane’s Supreme Court on Friday morning.

This will be a direction hearing, with a further hearing expected to be held in one or two weeks.

A copy of the original November 1989 warrant to apprehend Abbott for escaping from a Fremantle prison was also included in the file.

In Tuesday’s extradition hearing, defence lawyer Andrew O’Brien claimed the move to send his client back to WA was oppressive and an “abuse of power”.

Mr O’Brien argued this was partly because Abbott had himself attempted to resolve the matter and been rebuffed by WA authorities.

But police prosecutor Kevin Carmont said the matter shouldn’t fall into “oblivion” simply because of time.

Abbott remains in custody after being denied bail at Tuesday’s hearing in the Brisbane Magistrates Court.

He was dubbed the “Postcard Bandit” amid claims he taunted police by sending them postcards while on the run after his Fremantle prison break.

He also broke out of Brisbane’s maximum-security Sir David Longland Correctional Centre in late 1997 and was sentenced to a 25-year prison term after being recaptured the following year.

Abbott was granted parole by the Queensland parole review board last month after serving 18 years and failing in several previous attempts.

If released, his lawyers have said he plans to move to Cairns to live with his sister.