Bruce Morcombe: I want Daniel's killer over for dinner

Bruce Morcombe... still seeking answers.
Bruce Morcombe... still seeking answers. Warren Lynam

WHEN Bruce Morcombe is asked about the two people he would most like to invite to a dinner party, he doesn't hesitate for a second.

"Brett Cowan and (his lawyer) Tim Meehan,'' he says.

"Not for any devious reasons, just to ask them in a normal conversation, 'Have you any regrets in the decisions you have made in your life?'''

Brett Peter Cowan is serving a minimum 20-year jail term after being found guilty last year of murdering Sunshine Coast teenager Daniel Morcombe.

Recorded conversations in an extensive police sting involving undercover police proved crucial evidence in the trial.

The case shocked Australia, especially after revelations Cowan was a serial child sex offender, who had raped at least two other boys, aged just six and seven.

Bruce Morcombe told Australian Regional Media that Cowan was a man who had offended for 30 years and would always be a 'shadow in the community and a danger to our children'.

As a father, he says he finds it hard to understand how Mr Meehan can represent Cowan.

"It is an interesting challenge to get up each day, probably say goodbye to the kids on the way to school, help them pack their lunch in their schoolbag and then go and defend a predator.''

"It's a really unusual occupation.''

While the Morcombes understand the basic right, under the law, to have proper legal representation, they believe the Cowan's appeal is pointless, and a waste of taxpayers' money.

"At the end of the day it is not a question, in our view of the appeal, did we (the legal system) lock up an innocent man - have we got it wrong?

"I hear nobody saying there's a slim chance we got it wrong.''

"The question of the appeal is… was it legal… was the covert operation legal.''

"And we say… things need to be done legally.. but why are we looking at this?

"That's what I want to ask Tim Meehan.''

Mr Meehan could not be reached for comment but in November last year he revealed he had received a spike in hate mail since taking on the case.

The prominent Brisbane lawyer said he too was a parent and he could not begin to understand how "terrible it must be" for Bruce and Denise Morcombe.

"People seem to be really concerned about how I sleep at night," he told reporters.

"I can't dwell on that, I have a job to do and that's what I'm doing and that is to ensure again that justice is done according to law."

Cowan's confession to Daniel Morcombe's murder was captured on camera by police who posed as a "Mr Big" crime gang.

During the appeal, Cowan's lawyers argued the trial judge did not give enough weight to other suspects, including Douglas Jackway.

The Court of Appeal has reserved its decision.



This piece is part of the series, From The Heart: Aussie Icons Speak Out from Australian Regional Media.


In this video series we have also spoken to great Australians including: 

Television icon Ray Martin,

Australia's most famous tradie Scotty Cam,

Wildlife Warriors Bindi and Terri Irwin,

Radio presenters Amanda Keller and Brendan Jones,

Former Brisbane Bullets coach Brian Kerle,

Former Queensland Premier Anna Bligh,

Radio and television broadcaster Robin Bailey,

Regional construction magnate John Wagner and

Celebrity cooks and soon-to-be parents Dan and Steph Mulheron.

WE ARE a nation that punches above its weight.

For more than 220 years, Australia's greatness has been forged and carried by the strong, the resilient and the innovative.

To celebrate our great nation, Australian Regional Media has spoken to a range of important characters  - from state leaders to reality stars, wildlife warriors to journalists - for the series: "From The Heart: Aussie Icons Speak Out."

Television icon Ray Martin AM
Television icon Ray Martin AM Sarah Harvey

Television personality Ray Martin - once named the Prince of Interviewers - weighs in on why he does not consider Australia to be racist, even as he calls our record on Aboriginal rights "a festering sore".

You will hear novel ways of how Bindi and Terri Irwin keep Australia in their hearts, even when they are flying abroad.

And a multi-millionaire airport developer tells why his company chooses to stay in regional Australia, ignoring the appeal of a city's glittering skyline.

The frank interviews will give you an insight into some of Australia's important, interesting and iconic personalities.

The series of filmed interviews and their stories will run online from January 27, each day until early February.

TUESDAY: The Morcombes' push for a national Daniel's law child sex offenders register and child safety curriculum in all schools.


Topics:  brett peter cowan bruce morcombe daniel morcombe daniel morcombe foundation editors picks fromtheheart murder

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