KASAMA Vol. 20 No. 3 / July-August-September 2006 / Solidarity Philippines Australia Network

‘Evil husband’ action thrown out

by Leonie Lamont
The Sydney Morning Herald
August 3, 2006

Scales of Justice

A man once dubbed Sydney’s “most evil husband” has lost his bid to sue police from his prison cell over the investigation into the death of his second wife.

Thomas Andrew Keir today lost his District Court bid for up to $750,000 compensation for psychological damage he claims he suffered after police detained him the day his second wife, Rosalina Canonisado, was found strangled.

Keir was arrested on April 13, 1991 – the day his second wife was found strangled in the couple’s burning home. In 1993, he was acquitted of her murder.

He is serving a sentence for the murder of his first wife, Jean Keir.

Jean disappeared in February 1988 and Keir married Rosalina, her cousin, the following year.

It was not until after Rosalina’s death that bones were discovered in Keir’s Tregear backyard.

Keir has three times been convicted of murdering Jean. After his first two convictions were overturned on appeal, he faced a third trial in the NSW Supreme Court in 2004 and was again found guilty

He was sentenced in 2004 to 22 years’ jail for Jean’s murder.

Keir’s lawyer, Peter Dooley, said Keir had gone with the police to Mount Druitt to assist in the inquiry into Rosalina’s death. He claimed that police breached Keir’s rights during the ensuing seven hours.

He sought damages but, today, Justice Allan Hughes threw out the claim and ordered Keir to pay costs.

The judge ordered the police to pay Keir $350 for failing to return Rosalina’s earrings to him, instead of to his then sister-in-law, as they were his property.

- with AAP