Mum Of Murdered Schoolgirl Protests Release Of Her Killer
The mother of Samantha Knight, who was abducted by a notorious pedophile 33 years ago, has protested in Sydney's Bondi against the imminent release of her daughter's killer.
As her eyes welled with tears, Tess Knight said nothing would make her pain better but the community would be safer if Michael Anthony Guider remained behind bars.
"I'm concerned that he remains a danger to the community," Knight told reporters outside North Bondi Surf Life Saving Club.
The NSW Attorney-General is preparing to launch a last-minute legal bid to keep Guider behind bars while public support builds for new laws to keep him locked up indefinitely.
Guider was jailed for 17 years in 2002 for the manslaughter of Samantha who was last seen on a Bondi street in August 1986.
The court, at the time, heard Guider had given the nine-year-old an overdose of a sleeping drug.
The gardener and part-time babysitter was already serving a 16-year prison sentence after pleading guilty in 1996 to dozens of child sex offences against 11 victims.
Some of Guider's other victims had been drugged so he could photograph and abuse them.
Despite never revealing the location of Samantha's body, and never being granted parole, Guider's sentence will expire on June 6 and he is expected to walk from prison aged 69.
A small group of protesters, including a survivor and Samantha's school mates, banded together on Saturday and marched through Bondi with placards that read: "No Body? No Release."
Chantelle Hamilton, one of Guider's surviving victims, said it was "powerful and emotional" to meet Ms Knight in person for the first time, and "the sun came out for Sam".
"Keeping pedophiles in jail is important, they're an infestation in the community," she told AAP.
The now-30-year-old mother has already marched in Adelaide, where she lives, but wanted to protest in the community still haunted by Guider's crimes.
"Bondi remembers, people remember seeing Samantha's missing poster hung up around the place, they'll remember searching for her," Hamilton said.
"But her body was never found, there's been no real closure for her mum, her family or the community."
Hamilton said Guider's refusal to reveal the location of Samantha's body "rubbed salt in the wound".
The judge who sentenced Guider in 2002 said his continued use of drugs on children following Samantha's death showed he remained a danger.
Hamilton echoed those words 17 years later.
"He'll go back to his old hunting grounds," she said.
"His age won't diminish him as a predator or a threat."
Attorney-General Mark Speakman's office is expected to begin an application for a 12-month continuing detention order in the NSW Supreme Court on Monday.
The government wants that followed by a five-year extended supervision order to monitor Guider after his release.