Posted by: nativeiowan | February 16, 2011

truth, stranger than fiction?

ABC: A convicted murderer who escaped a Queensland jail and spent 15 years on the run has been working for the state’s health department for more than a decade.

Luke Andrew Hunter, 42, was nabbed by police on his Sunday morning jog at Herberton, west of Cairns, after officers were tipped off he may be hiding out on the Atherton Tableland.

Hunter is alleged to have escaped from the Borallon Correctional Centre, near Ipswich, in February 1996 by using bolt cutters to cut through a fence.

At the time he was serving a 21-year sentence for murdering a man so he could continue a romantic affair with his victim’s wife.

On Tuesday, Queensland Health said it was working with police following the arrest of a Herberton Hospital employee, who had been working there under a false name.

It is understood Hunter had been working as a groundskeeper at the campus.

“This employee began work with Queensland Health in November 1997,” a Queensland Health spokesperson said.

“Since 2006, Queensland Health has conducted compulsory criminal history checks of staff upon permanent appointment.

“However, this employee was appointed long before those checks were introduced.”

The spokesperson said the matter was now before the courts and it would be inappropriate to discuss it further.

Hunter was flown from Cairns to Brisbane on Monday afternoon following a brief mention in Cairns Magistrates Court and will be housed at the Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre while he awaits a hearing on a charge of escaping from custody.

It is understood Hunter was living in north Queensland for at least the past five years and was previously in Sydney, although much of his time on the run is unaccounted for.

He is also said to have been a part of a secretive north Queensland religious sect called the North Queensland Jesus Group.




  1. Sounds like something that would happen here…

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