May 30, 2003

WELL, THIS ACTUALLY IS NEWS:

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) today ruled out terrorism as the motivation for the alleged attempted hijacking of a Qantas flight to Launceston.

Federal agent Graham Ashton said the man charged over yesterday’s incident, David Mark Robinson, was an Australian national, had no Islamic background, and appeared to be acting alone.

Then, of course, there’s the inevitable next bit:

Meanwhile, Robinson was today described by his former boss as an affable, hard working employee. Robinson resigned from Ipex Computers in Melbourne in April.

Ipex company director David Cohen said Robinson had worked as a senior engineer with the company – located in Robinson’s home suburb of East Bentleigh – for six years.

He said staff at the 300-strong firm had been shocked by today’s front page news about their former colleague they knew as “Mark”.

“He was affable, very likeable, passionate about his customers … generally a very nice guy,” Mr Cohen told AAP.

“So are you surprised he shot Buckwheat?”

“Oh, no, it’s all he ever talked about.”