EXCLUSIVE: William Scetrine was a former journalist and senior adviser to the Australian Democrats party who in 2008 was sentenced to six years imprisonment for raping four primary-school aged boys. The judge said he had shown no remorse and there was little chance of rehabilitation.
Having been released from prison, Scetrine soon turned to social media where with his sometimes witty and erudite political posts he amassed a following in the thousands, including even True Crime News Weekly for a few weeks. And last that was heard of him, the convicted child rapist was looking for “friends” to travel with around Asia.
He presented himself as an old bloke with a conscience and compassion for the vulnerable, particularly the thousands in immigration and asylum detention demonised by the Australian Government.
Earlier this year, in mid-January, True Crime News Weekly was put in touch with 75-year-old ‘Bill’ Scetrine by a third party over Twitter with claims he had some interesting information and the contact details of a Pakistani student languishing in immigration detention.
We contacted Scetrine directly over Twitter and then by text message and were quickly provided with the information. It led to a major political story involving allegations of a “bribes for visas” scheme operating under Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton’s nose.
Scetrine was a senior media adviser to former Australian Democrats leader Janet Powell, and before that was a former high-profile Ballarat radio broadcaster. He had also held positions as the South Australian director of charities Ozcare and Freedom from Hunger. He had passed himself off as a “retired journo” interested in refugee issues when initially contacted by True Crime News Weekly.
On Twitter, Scetrine had built himself an impressive following of almost 3,000 followers. A lot of his posts concerned political and social matters. One recent post chastised the Catholic Church paedophile rapist, Cardinal George Pell, following his conviction over the rape of two 13-year-old boys.
“Although not a Catholic, I have known several Catholic priests over recent years,” Scetrine posted following news of Pell’s sentencing in March.
“To a man, they hated Pell and knew of his proclivities and actions. They were appalled by his actions in protecting his ‘mates’, claiming ‘purity’ and being the worst of hypercrites [sic]. Now, Karma!”
But, as it turns out, there is much that Scetrine has in common with the evil Cardinal.
He, too, is in fact a convicted and committed paedophile with charges ranging from collecting images of child abuse all the way to raping primary-school aged children and paying young boys to engage in sexual conduct in his presence.
However, as True Crime News Weekly found out recently when we confronted Scetrine, he is a paedophile and child rapist who remains in deep denial of his crimes.
In 2002, Scetrine was convicted for possessing over 450 images of child sexual abuse. It was revealed during the trial the former political adviser and journalist had been cruising internet chat rooms under the alias ‘Daddy Ballarat’. Scetrine had come to the attention of Victoria Police after they received a complaint from an individual who alleged the dangerous sex offender had sent him an indecent email.
But as far as Scetrine himself was concerned, he was innocent. That was despite being found guilty and sentenced to six months imprisonment, which was suspended for two years. Fined $2000, Scetrine claimed he had been the unwitting victim of a computer virus.
“Let this be a lesson to computer users about computer security. I have been the victim of a very nasty computer virus,” Scetrine said at the time.
“I would like to thank my family and friends for their support through this whole sorry ordeal.”
But ‘Sketchy Scetrine’ didn’t learn his lesson.
Dangerous paedophile rapist William Scetrine (Image: Twitter / Supplied)
Indeed, it’s more likely he grew ever more obsessed and obsessed until it was time for him to act out his heinous and perverted fantasies.
In 2008, Scetrine was convicted over the rape of four boys who he had groomed during visits to his home over a nine month period between August 2005 and May 2006. The boys had initially gone over to Scetrine’s home to use his computer.
Instead, the manipulative sex offender showed the boys pornography on his computer. He then began masturbating in front of the boys. He then began to touch them inappropriately. He then paid the boys to engage in sexual activities with each other. He then eventually raped the boys, including anally and orally. At least one of the boys he raped was Aboriginal.
In total, Scetrine was found “guilty of 18 counts of committing an indecent act with or in the presence of a child under 16 and six counts of taking part in an act of sexual penetration with a child under 16”. The judge remarked that Scetrine had shown no remorse and that there was very little prospect of his rehabilitation. He was sentenced to a maximum of six years jail, with a minimum non-parole period of four years.
One could say he got off lightly, as do so many other sex offenders and rapists.
Speaking to True Crime News Weekly this month, Scetrine however claimed his criminal convictions were the result of a wide-ranging political conspiracy against him.
And it dated back all the way to 1980 and his attempt to gain political office as a member of the Labor Party.
“I was about to gain pre-selection for the Labor Party in Adelaide in 1980 when my company was raided by a prominent member of the Liberal Party,” Scetrine claimed.
“I was press secretary to a senator and stood for the Australian Democrats in Ballarat in the 90s.
“My Liberal opponent threatened to make sorry if I didn’t give him my preferences. I didn’t. He was an ex-police officer. The charges were bogus but they ended my political ambition.”
The apparent political conspiracy against Scetrine didn’t end there though.
According to the convicted rapist, it stretched a further more years and somehow resulted in him raping four primary-school aged boys.
“My wife and I agreed to look after the children next door after school. Little did we know their stepfather – a Pentecostal Christian – was a friend of a Liberal man at a local golf club,” Scetrine claimed to True Crime News Weekly.
“The first we knew of all this was when the police arrived and said four boys had made allegations. One of those boys was an Aboriginal kid we had never seen. I was convicted. In my appeal (NOTE: which was dismissed), the three Supreme Court judges found that there were serious flaws in the conduct of the trial.
“I ask you to please consider my family, they have been through enough trauma and don’t deserve any more.
“We have worked hard to put all this behind us and just want to get on with our lives.”
But just how far Scetrine has “put all this behind” is a little unclear if one of his recent and ultimately final posts on Twitter is any hint.
On March 24, Scetrine posted an odd and ultimately chilling message when one takes into account his criminal history and perverted interests.
“My job – My Life – Travel Companion,” Scetrine wrote, along with a happy face with tongue thirsting from the side .
“If you or your friends travel to Asia or anywhere in the world please contact me.
“Can be any countries. I will take care of you as a Travel Companion. All clients are welcome (Single or Couples) … See more.”
Convicted paedophile and rapist William Scetrine looking for “friends” to travel with to Asia (Image: Twitter / Supplied)
Accompanying the message was an image of a young Asian man.
According to a local news report at the time of Scetrine’s sentencing in 2008, the mother of one of the boys who had been sexually assaulted described the verdict as “justice for all of us”.
“He’s raped these kids of their innocence,” she told Ballarat’s The Courier newspaper. “It’s just ripping us apart, (it’s) ripped our hearts out.”
The woman said she had trusted Scetrine “to the max” and had not seen any signs of his true predatorial nature.
Another relative of one of the boys is reported to have yelled out in court just after Scetrine was sentenced: “I hope you rot in hell for what you’ve done”.
When contacted by True Crime News Weekly, a spokesperson for Victoria Police said that due to the Privacy Act they could not comment on any individuals. Scetrine’s Twitter account has however now been removed. He was placed on the sex offender’s register for life in 2008.
UPDATE: As of April 17, 2019 William Scetrine is now back on Twitter under his same account details.