Meninga’s brother makes bid for freedom

The jailed brother of rugby league legend Mal Meninga has taken his bid for freedom to the Supreme Court.

Bevan Meninga has already served 21 years in prison for the rape and murder of a teenage girl on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.

He applied to the Supreme Court for parole after the Queensland Parole Board failed to rule on his release.

The parole board had failed in its duty to decide on Meninga’s application within 210 days of receiving it, the Supreme Court heard on Wednesday.

Meninga applied 12 months ago and was “not prepared to wait any longer”, his lawyer Julie Devery said.

The parole board was planning to meet on Friday to decide whether to grant parole or a take a preliminary view to decline it, the court heard.

Justice Anthe Philippides said a decision had to be made given how long Meninga had spent waiting.

“I think it’s appropriate that the matter proceed,” she said.

“If a decision is made and if it’s not necessary to proceed further with this application, so be it.”

Justice Philippides adjourned the matter to February 13, to ensure a quick decision on Meninga’s parole.

Meninga, then 20, was sentenced to life in prison in August 1992 for the rape and murder of 19-year old Cheree Richardson.

Ms Richardson’s battered body was found in an Alexandra Headland park on the Sunshine Coast.

She had suffered massive head injuries after being bashed with a tree branch and also had internal injuries.

At the time of the attack, Meninga had been on parole for bashing a woman with a stake in her home.

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