Pedophile priest’s attrocities laid bare

Written by admin on 30/07/2019 Categories: 苏州美睫

To serial pedophile Gerald Francis Ridsdale, violating children was “the Lord’s work”.

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That’s what he told one of his 53 victims as he assaulted the nine-year-old altar boy.

Ridsdale began befriending, isolating and preying on vulnerable children almost as soon as he was ordained as a priest in 1961.

It was not until 1993 that his atrocities caught up with him, with his first jail stint.

He has remained in jail since 1994 and the 79-year-old is almost certain to die in prison after Victorian County Court Chief Judge Michael Rozenes sentenced him for another eight years on the latest charges on Tuesday.

But while Ridsdale spends his days as an inmate and prison gardener, his legacy of violated children growing into damaged adults continues to ripple through Victoria’s community.

Their suffering was laid bare in Ridsdale’s court appearance in March, as the former priest sat in the dock with his head bowed.

“I trusted you, Gerald Ridsdale. You represented God and all that is good,” one woman said.

“You exploited, manipulated and humiliated me while you hid behind the veil of the church.

“My only hope for you, Gerald Ridsdale, is that you do have some understanding of the misery and damage you have done to me and you’re never released to hurt another child.”

This woman’s life was forever altered when Ridsdale pulled the then-10-year-old her close to him as they sat together in a parked car and said: “You’ll have to kiss (me) better.”

“It’s our special secret,” he told her afterwards.

A bag of boiled lollies or an ice-cream was her pay-off each time she was abused.

“As a child, how could I live in this world that didn’t make sense?” she asked.

Alcoholism, divorce and broken homes feature in the lives of many of the 14 most recent Ridsdale victims to detail their suffering in court.

Another woman forced to sleep a night in Ridsdale’s room, where he kissed her, now struggles to kiss her husband.

“I’m not remembering it, I’m reliving it,” she told the court.

An altar boy abused under the guise of “the Lord’s work” said he became a fully blown alcoholic by age 17.

Another victim was groomed by Ridsdale at age four. He told her she was “God’s little angel” on his regular visits to a relative.

He later raped her in a confessional box, telling her she needed to be punished for her sins.

“I have no recollection in my childhood of ever feeling safe,” she said in her victim statement read to the court.

“I quickly learned the world could be an evil place.”

That Ridsdale was allowed to continue this pattern of abuse for 26 years speaks in part to the fear and shame he instilled in his victims.

But it also points to the attitude of the Catholic Church, which repeatedly moved him to different parishes when confronted with claims of abuse.

The church now regards Ridsdale as one of the worst child sex offenders in Australia’s history, and accepts 67 claims of abuse against him.

But when a parent approached the then-Ballarat bishop Ronald Mulkearns about Ridsdale’s conduct in 1975, the response was to shift him elsewhere.

Ridsdale was sent for counselling and moved from Inglewood to the Parish of Edenhope, in Victoria’s west.

Further complaints were made against him while working at the Mortlake parish in 1981 and he moved to Sydney.

By 1986, he was back in Horsham, in western Victoria. When further issues were raised, his priestly duties were removed.

The church then sent Ridsdale to the US state of New Mexico for what it described as “rehabilitation”.

But perhaps the act that most outraged victims was when Bishop George Pell, the man who would go on to become cardinal and Australia’s most senior Catholic, accompanied Ridsdale to his first court appearance in 1993.

He later admitted it was a mistake to show “priestly solidarity”, as he did not know the extent of Ridsdale’s crimes.

In jailing Ridsdale for 18 years in 1994, Victorian County Court Judge John Dee attacked the church’s role in enabling Ridsdale’s depravity.

“The victims were not given, in my view, any priority by your superiors in the Catholic Church,” Judge Dee told Ridsdale.

“The image and reputation of the church was given first priority over any past victim or potential victim.

“You were given some perfunctory in-house counselling before being shifted off to continue your criminal conduct in other areas.”

Dr Pell has since told the royal commission into child sexual abuse that Australia’s Catholic Church was in the 1990s far ahead of attitudes to abuse held in the Vatican, where complainants were regarded as enemies of the church.

While Dr Pell finds comfort in the historical attitude of the Australian arm of the church, it’s not so for Ridsdale’s victims.

Many of them told the March court hearing of their disenchantment at what they once considered a precious institution.

“He was protected, not us,” one male victim told the court.

“I’m unable to have any faith in them as an organisation,” another victim said.

Another judge, County Court Judge Bill White, also hit out at the Catholic Church for its inaction when sentencing Ridsdale in 2006.

The result was disastrous, catastrophic and tragic, he said.

“A number of suicide attempts and possible actual suicides,” Justice White said.

“Loss of trust in the church and its clergy, loss of faith, mental breakdowns, a number of victims diagnosed with depression, alcoholism, post traumatic stress disorder and hospitalisation in mental institutions.

“Your victims, their families, your family, practising Catholics and the church have all suffered.”

(* Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14)

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Unions reap money from senate office rent

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Two unions and a super fund involving a union have reaped more than $430,000 in rent for three Labor senators’ electorate offices.

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Labor senators Kim Carr, Anne McEwen and Alex Gallacher rented premises respectively from the meat industry union’s superannuation fund; United Voice, a childcare, cleaners and health workers union; and the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA).

Over the past three years they paid a total of $435,460 in rent, figures from the Department of Finance show.

Senator Gallacher’s lease from the SDA was terminated in July last year but the others are ongoing.

The figures were released in response to a Senate estimates hearing question from Nationals senator Bridget McKenzie about how unions had benefited from federal funds under the former Labor government.

Employment Minister Eric Abetz told AAP on Tuesday such arrangements may technically be within the rules.

“But it is clearly not a good look when Labor senators use taxpayers’ money to lease offices that are owned by unions factionally aligned to their own,” Senator Abetz said.

“This raises legitimate questions of whether certain deals have been done between Labor MPs and union bosses that involve the use of public money in this way.”

Senator Carr told AAP he had legitimately rented his Melbourne office from an industry superannuation fund for two decades.

“It’s not true to say I rent it from a union. I rent it from an industry super fund which is the owner of the building,” Senator Carr said.

“The fund is 50-50 run by the union and industry.”

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Worker launched off bulk carrier: report

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A worker on a Maltese bulk carrier was launched off the ship in a freefall lifeboat and spent hours in waters off Western Australia’s north after the release system was incorrectly reset in Singapore.

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The Aquarosa was en route to Kwinana, south of Perth, on March 1 when the lifeboat was inadvertently released during a routine inspection, seriously injuring an engineer, who was in the orange vessel at the time.

He had noted in Singapore that the lifeboat release system hydraulics appeared to be losing oil, so he topped-up the pump with oil and moved its handle three or four times.

He intended to pressurise the system a little to see if he could identify any obvious oil leaks, but the boat shuddered and began to slide down the launching rails.

Knowing that the boat had been released and that he was unable to get out, he took a seat and attempted to put on the seatbelt.

The alarm was raised on the ship but it took about five hours to get the boat back on to the stern, with a 1.5 metre swell making manoeuvring and securing the lifeboat difficult.

Lines were thrown in an attempt to secure it but became stuck in the propeller, and a pilot ladder was deployed, but the engineer could not climb it because he was injured.

He was eventually helped onto the ship via a lowered gangway and later treated onshore for a fractured kneecap.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau said in a recently-released preliminary report that measures had been implemented to prevent such an accident occurring again, including installing a safety pin that can be placed into the release hook during inspections and maintenance.

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Drugmaker Takeda to fight $6b US damages

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Japan’s biggest drugs-maker Takeda Pharmaceutical says it will fight a huge $US6.

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0 billion ($A6.49 billion) damages order following a US trial over the safety of its Actos diabetes medicine.

The company said on Tuesday it “respectfully disagrees” with the judgment awarded by a jury in the southern state of Louisiana on Monday, which also ordered the firm’s co-defendant US drugs firm Eli Lilly to pay $US3.0 billion in damages.

Investors dumped the Japanese firm’s Tokyo-listed shares which fell 5.16 per cent to Y4,572 yen on Tuesday.

The issue at the trial, which began in February, was whether the drug could be blamed for bladder cancer in a plaintiff who was taking the medicine, and whether the firm knew about those risks, with other US cases still pending.

“Takeda respectfully disagrees with the verdict and we intend to vigorously challenge this outcome through all available legal means, including possible post-trial motions and an appeal,” Kenneth Greisman, senior vice president and general counsel for Takeda’s US unit, said in a statement.

“We believe the evidence did not support a finding that Actos caused (the plaintiff’s) bladder cancer. We also believe we demonstrated that Takeda acted responsibly with regard to Actos.”

While Takeda rang up about half its $US15.0 billion sales last fiscal year in Japan, North America and Europe are also major markets and the firm has operations around the world.

Eli Lilly had partnered with Takeda to help market the drug in the US.

Actos – a prescription medication launched in 2010 to improve blood sugar control in adults with Type 2 diabetes – had been a promising drug for Takeda, which was recently forced to cancel development of another diabetes treatment because of safety concerns.

But sales of the medicine – also sold as Pioglitazone – have plunged. They fell 73 per cent in the nine months to December from the same period a year earlier, according to Takeda’s latest financial statements.

The drug is banned in France.

The US judgment comes about a week after former GlaxoSmithKline executive Christophe Weber was installed as Takeda’s chief operating officer, one of the few foreign-born managers to sit in the top ranks of a Japanese firm. He is expected to become president in June.

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Church ‘failed Ridsdale abuse victims’

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One of Australia’s most notorious pedophile priests’ latest set of convictions is further evidence of the Catholic Church’s cover-up of abuse, a victim’s advocacy group says.

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Broken Rites spokesman Bernard Barrett said the church turned a blind eye to Gerald Ridsdale’s abuse of children.

“His colleagues and his superiors knew for 30 years,” Dr Barrett told AAP.

“They inflicted him on more and more victims and more and more parishes.

“That’s what really matters, the cover up, which is now being exposed.

“It’s taken 20 years to get the story out and the whole story hasn’t been told.”

Dr Barrett says there are victims yet to see justice regarding Ridsdale.

“They don’t quite know what to do about it. They think they’ll get over it.

“But in fact they’re now aged 40 or 50 or whatever and they haven’t gotten over it.

“The longer they leave it, the more of a worry it is for them.”

Lawyer Angela Sdrinis has acted for a number of victims alleging abuse by Ridsdale, but says not all have had the strength to report it to police.

Ms Sdrinis says the fact victims keep coming forward and Ridsdale keeps making admissions points to systemic failures of the Catholic Church and its religious orders.

But victims are still denied justice because the church continues to rely on a type of defence that says there is no legal entity victims can sue.

“No matter how strong the evidence against the church, there is no legal entity that can be forced to take responsibility in these historical sex abuse claims,” she said.

In sentencing Ridsdale on Tuesday, Victorian County Court chief judge Michael Rozenes found many of his victims came forward following the parliamentary inquiry into the handling of child abuse allegations by churches and non-government organisations.

The church now regards Ridsdale as one of the worst child sex offenders in Australia’s history, and accepts 67 claims of abuse against him.

The state inquiry noted only a small number of civil cases alleging criminal child abuse in an organisational setting have been determined in Australia and it was unaware of any cases that made it to trial in Victoria.

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Man Mundine aims to tame beast Clottey

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“The Man” is intent on taming the boxer he has dubbed the “beast”, with Anthony Mundine declaring there’s no point talking about fighting Floyd Mayweather if he loses to Joshua Clottey on Wednesday.

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Mundine will make the first defence of his WBA International super welterweight title against New York-based Ghanaian Clottey at the Newcastle Entertainment Centre.

Former IBK welterweight champion Clottey has challenged Mundine to stand and fight with him and not to hold.

Mundine came in slightly over the 69.85 kg limit at a media call on Tuesday morning, but wasn’t concerned.

After spending time in a spa, he scaled 69.8 compared with Clottey’s 69.7, at the official weigh in three hours later.

Clottey, 36, (37-4, 22 KOs) is ranked 14th, 11 places below 38-year-old Mundine (46-5, 27 KOs).

The African fighter has beaten two other world champions, Zab Judah and the late Diego Corrales and has never been stopped.

His only losses were to other world champions, Manny Pacquiao Miguel Cotto, Antonio Maragarito and Carlos Baldomir.

While talk persists of fights against WBA Super champion Mayweather, WBO title holder Demetrius Andrade, Cotto and Saul Alvarez, Mundine steadfastly refuses to overlook Clottey.

“If I lose his one, then there’s no point in talking about Mayweather or Alvarez or Cotto, because every fighter is a hurdle and I’ve got to make sure I get over this one,” Mundine said.

“There is no doubt the man is a bit of a beast.

“He’s one of the best fighters I’ve fought so I’m paying my just dues and respects.

“He’s an allrounder. He can box, he can come on the front foot, he can box on the back foot, he can counterpunch and he’s got power in both hands.

“In saying that, I feel everything that he does I do a little bit better.”

Clottey, who is listed as seven centimetres smaller than Mundine, isn’t keen on a pure boxing match.

“With boxing sometimes it makes the whole fight boring, ” Clottey told AAP.

“I always like to throw punches and beat the people up and show my boxing ability.

“I wish Anthony is going to stay there for us to show our punching power and show our boxing ability and what we can do.

“I don’t like holding, Don’t hold me and I won’t hold you.”

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Hey Dad! actor Hughes ‘a broken man’

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He was once a much loved on-screen Australian father.

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Now Hey Dad! actor Robert Hughes is a “broken man”, having been found guilty of sexually and indecently assaulting young girls.

After his earlier defiance, it was a different mood on Tuesday when a jury found Hughes guilty of a 10th charge at Sydney’s District Court on Tuesday

While on Monday Hughes stood up and yelled, “I am innocent” after being convicted of nine charges, on Tuesday the actor said nothing as the final verdict was handed down.

Hughes was “truly a broken man”, his lawyer Greg Walsh told reporters outside court.

The actor has always denied allegations he abused five girls between the 1980s and 1990s.

Mr Walsh said the 65-year-old “maintains his innocence” and that he expected his client would appeal against the verdicts.

But head of the sex crimes squad, Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec, said the verdicts were a “testament to the bravery of the victims”.

Allegations against Hughes were first made public in 2010 when one of the victims did a paid interview with the Nine Network’s A Current Affair.

Strike Force Ruskin was then established to investigate allegations, with officers interviewing more than 200 people.

In December 2012, Hughes was extradited to Sydney from London, where he was living with his long-term partner and theatrical agent Robyn Gardiner.

During the course of his much-publicised trial, which began on February 24, the jury heard a range of allegations from five women, as well as some of their family members.

One victim described how she came to dread Hughes’s visits to her parents’ home in the 1980s, saying she had woken on one occasion to find the actor with his hand in her pants.

“I was completely shocked and scared so I just closed my eyes,” she said.

Another told how Hughes had forced her to touch him when she was staying at his North Shore home in the early 80s.

Eventually, when she was seven she told her parents: “I don’t like the games Robert plays with me”.

The family went to police in 1986 with the allegations but eventually decided not to pursue the matter through the courts, fearing it would be too traumatising for their daughter.

The court heard from three women who worked with the actor on the set of Hey Dad! where he played the father Martin Kelly.

They painted a picture of a man who liked to lie in his dressing room in various levels of undress.

“It looked like he was waiting for someone to walk in on him and see him naked,” one woman said.

It was while on set that Hughes committed an act of indecency on a 12-year-old girl by exposing himself and “wiggling his hips”.

Of the 11 charges Hughes faced the jury found him guilty of 10, which included two counts of sexual intercourse without consent and seven counts of indecent assault.

However, they were unable to come to a decision on one of the counts of committing an act of indecency.

Hughes will face a sentencing hearing before Justice Peter Zahra on May 2.

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Game of Thrones draws huge US ratings

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The first episode of the new Games of Thrones season drew HBO’s biggest US audience since the finale of The Sopranos, data showed on Monday after the broadcaster’s online app crashed under the strain.

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Sunday’s fourth season debut drew 6.6 million viewers, the most since the finale of HBO cult hit The Sopranos was watched by 11.9 million people in 2007, according to Nielsen figures cited by industry journal Variety.

HBO Go, an online app that allows viewers to watch shows any time, crashed as tens of thousands tried to log on to watch the show, which provides a jaw-dropping mix of sex, violence and vengeance.

“HBO Go did experience issues due to overwhelming demand around the premiere of Game of Throne,” the premium broadcaster said in a widely-cited statement.

Since its debut in 2011, the HBO drama based on George RR Martin’s best-selling novels about a struggle for power between feuding clans in seven mythical kingdoms has won a devoted global fan base – President Barack Obama among them, reportedly – to establish itself as the star of the US cable channel’s stable.

The series has wowed critics with its densely-layered plot, lavish production values and a readiness to kill off, invariably in gruesome fashion, protagonists who had hitherto seemed integral to the show.

Four words – “No one is safe” – have become the unofficial catchphrase for devotees of the series. Guessing which character may soon meet his or her maker is all part of the fun.

An infamously bloody episode in Season 3, involving a massacre at a wedding party, was one of the most talked about and tweeted television events of 2013.

YouTube videos capturing the shock of unsuspecting viewers watching as the on-screen slaughter unfolded rapidly went viral.

All the signs are that fans of the show will not be disappointed by the 10-episode Season 4, which debuted in the US on Sunday before being screened in Australia on Foxtel’s Showcase channel on Monday afternoon.

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Bulldogs upset at NRL ruling

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Canterbury are privately seething at the NRL’s decision to slap them with a $20,000 fine after Josh Jackson was allowed to remain on the field despite showing signs of concussion.

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The Bulldogs are certain to appeal the breach notice handed to them on Tuesday by the NRL’s head of football Todd Greenberg.

The incident took place in the final seconds of the club’s round two win over Cronulla where Jackson struggled to get to his feet after making a tackle.

He then got back to take his place in the defensive line without being treated by a member of the Bulldogs’ medical team.

A club source told AAP the Bulldogs are upset at the ruling because at the time their physio was already treating another player and unable to attend to the back-rower before the fulltime siren sounded.

But Greenberg said the timing of the incident was irrelevant and imposing the fine, half of which is suspended, shows how seriously the code is taking concussion.

“Today is a line in the sand and shows we’re fair dinkum about the policy and how we’ll police the policy,” Greenberg said.

“It’s our view the Bulldogs did not comply with the policy.

“Our view was he should have been taken from the field. The policy is designed to take players and place them in the care of the person most responsible which is the club doctor.”

Bulldogs CEO Raelene Castle said while the club was supportive of the league’s new concussion policy, it was at odds with the outcome.

“We don’t agree with all the findings in the breach notice and, as per the process, will be using the next seven days to have those discussions with the NRL,” Castle said in a statement.

A total of 27 players have been taken from the field to undergo the newly-introduced Sideline Concussion Assessments (SCAs) in the season’s first five rounds, with 14 of them returning to the field after being cleared of concussion.

Greenberg praised the clubs for the way they’ve embraced the changes and said player safety is at the forefront of the ruling.

“I genuinely congratulate the clubs for the first five rounds for the way they have adopted the policy,” he said.

“We have players taken from the field when historically they wouldn’t be.”

Five clubs have so far been given “please explain” notices in relation to their compliance.

Greenberg said including the Jackson investigation, three of those cases have now been resolved with the NRL satisfied with responses from Parramatta and Penrith.

Three others are still being probed including another involving the Bulldogs and their decision to allow front-rower James Graham to come back onto the field in round four against Melbourne despite looking very groggy.

Greenberg refused to go into detail about the progress of the investigations, but should the Bulldogs be found to have a case to answer, they could face the prospect of points deduction.

He also defended the NRL match review committee following the decision not to punish Gold Coast hooker Beau Falloon following his lifting tackle on Will Chambers on Sunday.

Melbourne have demanded to know why Falloon wasn’t sanctioned, a week after Storm prop Jordan McLean was slugged with a seven-week ban.

“Every club is entitled to ask questions,” Greenberg said.

“The game has been around for a hundred plus years and there is always questions asked about various issues in the games.

“The important part is that the match review committee are independent and made up of experienced former players who are there to discharge duties according to the rules.

“You won’t always agree with the decisions they make but the process is fundamentally correct.”

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Samantha Jade up for World Music Award

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X Factor winner Samantha Jade is among more than a dozen Australian female artists including Kylie Minogue and Missy Higgins nominated for this year’s World Music Awards in Monaco.

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The World Music Awards (WMA) next month have been presented since 1989 and recognise the best-selling recording artists from every continent based on sales.

The WMA also presents nine categories voted for by the public.

The awards are world’s best male and female artist, best group, best entertainer, best live act and best song, best album and best video.

Jade’s top 10 single Firestarter, which is No.4 in Russia and the Ukraine, has been nominated for world’s best song and world’s best video.

She is also nominated for world’s best female artist, world’s best live act and world’s best entertainer.

Other Australian singers in the best female artist category include Tina Arena and Iggy Azalea. Kiwi sensation Lorde is also in contention.

Jade said it was a thrill to be recognised in the same category as Minogue who she played in the recent mini-series INXS: Never Tear Us Apart.

“Being recognised is amazing…I’m going to have to get my fans to vote,” she told AAP.

Jade is just finishing off her latest album, which she hopes to release in June, and a tour is planned for later this year.

Jade said playing Minogue was a dream come true but she had no plans to fervently chase any more roles.

“Everything was just right,” she said.

“To play Kylie was a dream and INXS is such an iconic Australian band that it just seemed the right part.”

Besides recording music, Jade is an ambassador for a program in which people who spend four hours as a volunteer can be rewarded with rock concert vouchers.

There have already been gigs staged under the Optus RockCorps program and the next one for volunteers is being headlined by New York indie rock band American Authors.

The American Authors will play at the Tivoli on April 21 and interested volunteers can sign-up at 南宁夜网.optusrockcorps广西桑拿,广西桑拿网, or call 1800 ROCK 800.

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Teen sprint sensation aims to be next Usain Bolt

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To his friends at school, Anas Abu Ganaba is simply known as “Bolt”.

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“I look up to Usain Bolt, Ray Lewis,” said Anas. “They motivate me everyday and one day I want to be like them.”

 

To his trainer and officials, the 17-year-old sprinter could be track and field’s next big thing.

 

Anas’ coach, Robert Bangel, says the teenager has got the talent to go far.

“The thing that stood out for me with Anas was his raw ability combined with his passion for the sport. I have great hopes that he could make an Australian relay team in the coming years,” he said.

 

Anas’ life so far has been anything but a clear run.

 

Born in Cairo, Anas and his family lived in Sudan and Egypt before moving to Australia when he was four.

 

From a very young age taking responsibility was a way of life.

 

“It was pretty scary over there (in Egypt) because we used to get left home alone,” Anas said. “Our parents used to work for us – it was pretty scary looking after my two brothers.”

 

Away from the track, his mother Aziza Silik said family is as important to young Anas as his early morning training sessions.

 

“He’s a nice boy, good brother for the kids, he helps me at home and for his brothers and sisters.”

 

Anas currently runs the 100 metres in 10.57 seconds.

 

His potential was so impressive that Robert Bangel, the head athletics coach at the Patrician Brothers’ College Blacktown, opted to take him under his wing-free of charge.

 

The school’s Principal Santo Passarello said the partnership between the year 12 student and his coach has produced record results.

“Anas has refused overtures from most professional coaches. He likes Mr Bangel and obviously he’s been nurtured under his tutelage.”

 

Anas knows the road to the Rio Olympics will be more of a marathon than a sprint.

 

“My main goal is just to train hard and hopefully get an Olympics shot in the future.”

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