Paedophile in Grafton
By DAN MacDONALD
ONE of Australia's most notorious paedophiles, Bradley Pendragon, was spotted walking down the main street of Grafton on Wednesday afternoon.
The 46-year-old, who spent 10 years in Bangkok's Klong Prem prison convicted for the rape of three girls, was seen walking on the footpath near Market Square on Prince Street.
A retired prison guard who worked with Pendragon in Sydney's Long Bay maximum security jail during the 1980s saw the serial child rapist.
The former guard, who requested to remain anonymous, said Pendragon had a long beard, long hair, was wearing scruffy clothes, and walked with a stick.
"He was also carrying a swag or bed roll type thing," he said. "He may have been hitch-hiking ... he was quite visible around town.
"I recognised him straight away and it would surprise me if the police didn't know where he was. I'd say they'd know his exact movements."
Remembering the convicted paedophile from when he guarded him in jail and using images recently published in The Daily Telegraph, the Grafton resident was confident it was Pendragon.
"He realised I was looking at him. He is not the sort of person I wouldn't recognise."
Member for Clarence, Steve Cansdell said Pendragon had family in the area and it was one of his biggest fears he would be released here.
"He is a remorseless, unrepentant re-offender and until he actually gets an address of permanent abode, not even the police know where he is.
"He is definitely unwelcome in our area."
Pendragon checked out of a Sydney homeless shelter last Friday amid media reports he was living with teenagers and around the corner from a primary school.
Bernadette McMenamin, chief executive of child protection agency Child Wise, said there was still a 'very, very, very high risk Pendragon would offend again'.
"He is one of the most dangerous because he had no treatment in Thailand and has never expressed remorse," she said.
"He saw himself as a victim and has never said, 'I am not going to harm a child'."
The Australian paedophile was the first foreigner to have been sentenced for child sex offences in Thailand, having admitted to charges against three girls aged nine to 11 years.
Pendragon was one of about 70 foreign prisoners released in Thailand after receiving amnesties to mark the 60th anniversary of the accession of Thai King Bhumipol Adulyadej.
Local police said they knew nothing about Pendragon being in Grafton this week.