JAILED: Marist Brother Graeme Mundine was a danger to children, and five of them eventually spoke to police

  • By a Broken Rites researcher, article posted on 7 February 2019

Graeme Mundine (born in 1960 with an Aboriginal background) was educated by the Marist Brothers who eventually recruited him to become a Brother in the Marist Order. Brother Graeme Mundine then worked in Catholic schools in New South Wales. He eventually left the Marists and became a prominent advocate for indigenous Australians. In December 2018 (aged 58), he appeared in a Sydney court, where he was sentenced to jail for sexual crimes which he committed against five boys while he worked as a Marist Brother and dormitory master at St Gregory's College in Campbelltown (in Sydney's south-west) in the 1980s.

Graeme Mundine is a Bundjalung man who was born on 19 August 1960 near Grafton in northern NSW, the youngest of 11 children.

In Campbelltown District Court in December 2018, Graeme Mundine faced three charges of assault, and also an act of indecency and four charges of indecent assault relating to victims under the age of 16.

Mundine was sentenced to three years in prison with an 18 month non-parole period for offences relating to five male victims.

During the sentencing, Judge Chris O’Brien told the court that Mundine had “besmirched the reputation of the religious order [the Marists] and the men who followed in his footsteps”.

“These are serious offences which occurred over a four-and-a-half year period,” he said.

“This was a serious breach of trust and abuse of power.

“The offender took advantage of the naivety and vulnerability of the victims.

“Disturbingly the events occurred when a victim was seeking guidance or support and was instead met with sexual abuse.

“The victim impact statements were both powerful and moving.

“There is no doubt these events have had a significant affect on their lives.”

The judge acknowledged Mr Mundine’s work as an indigenous leader in years after the assaults took place and that [judging by court records] he had not re-offended in the past 34 years.

However, a custodial sentence was the only appropriate punishment for these crimes, the judge said.

Footnote

In another court case, Graeme Mundine was convicted of similar crimes (committed in 1988) against male students at another Catholic boarding school at Pagewood, a suburb in Sydney's south.

One of Graeme Mundine's siblings is Warren Mundine, the former chairman of the Abbott government’s Indigenous Advisory Council.