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Sunday, December 04, 2022

Moment Australia’s most wanted fugitive is confronted mid-flight after breakthrough arrest

Moment Australia's most wanted fugitive is confronted mid-flight after breakthrough arrest

A convicted killer who eluded authorities for more than a decade has returned to the state he fled, accompanied by police.

A 12-year manhunt for Graham Gene Potter ended in far north Queensland on Monday, when detectives found him at a home in the Tablelands region.

WATCH ABOVE: Graham Potter is confronted mid-extradition flight

Convicted killer and former fugitive Graham Gene Potter is extradited from Queensland via Cairns Airport. Credit: JUSTIN BRIERTY,AAPIMAGE

Queensland Police said he was living under a fake name “Josh Lawson” and biometric testing was needed to confirm his identity following his arrest at Ravenshoe, south of Cairns.

The 64-year-old appeared via video link in Atherton Magistrates Court the following day, where extradition to Victoria was granted, and he is set to appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Potter has been wanted since 2010 after allegedly failing to appear on charges of conspiracy to murder and commonwealth drug offenses.

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Potter was questioned on his extradition flight to Melbourne by 7NEWS reporter Cameron Baud.

Baud: “Where have you been for the last 12 years?”

Potter: “I’m unable to talk with you, I’m sorry.”

Baud: “Have you spoken to your mum since you’ve been picked up?”

Potter: “I found out she was alive about two hours ago. I was under the belief that both my father and my mother had passed away.”

Baud: “Have you been to Victoria or New South Wales during your time?”

Graham Gene Potter.
Graham Gene Potter. Credit: AAP

See the moment police caught Potter in the video below

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On the run

While he’s been “keeping a low profile”, police said Potter had assimilated with some members of the local community in Ravenshoe.

No one has been charged in connection with Potter’s hiding spot.

While Potter managed to evade authorities for more than a decade, detectives say they were always close by.

Graham Potter Was Arrested On Monday.
Graham Potter was arrested on Monday. Credit: Queensland Police
A Dwelling Where Fugitive Graham Gene Potter Was Allegedly Found By Police, In Ravenshoe, Queensland, Tuesday, February 22, 2022. The 12-Year Manhunt For The Convicted Killer Ended In Far North Queensland On Monday When Detectives Found The 64-Year-Old At A Home In The Tablelands Region.  (Aap Image/Justin Brierty) No Archiving
A dwelling where fugitive Graham Gene Potter was allegedly found by Police, in Ravenshoe, Queensland, Tuesday, February 22, 2022. The 12-year manhunt for the convicted killer ended in Far North Queensland on Monday when detectives found the 64-year-old at a home in the Tablelands region. (AAP Image/Justin Brierty) NO ARCHIVING Credit: JUSTIN BRIERTY,AAPIMAGE

“We believe that he has been in the area for the last 12 years at least,” Far North Queensland Police Inspector Kevin Goan said on Tuesday.

“We’ve had information over a number of years that he may have been frequenting that residence. Police have attended there previously but had no reason to further search of the residence.

“The credible information that came through to investigators was sufficient for them to gain lawful entry.”

Potter served 15 years in jail for the 1981 mutilation and murder of NSW woman Kim Barry.

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