Fugitive Taskforce detectives have released never before seen images as part of a renewed appeal for information in relation to absconder Graham Gene Potter.
The 61-year-old has been on the run since he failed to appear on bail for conspiracy to murder charges at Melbourne Magistrate’s Court on 1 February, 2010.
Potter was last sighted by local police in Tully, Queensland on 28 August 2010 when he ran from a vehicle during a routine police intercept.
An extensive search was subsequently carried out and his camping equipment was seized by the Queensland Police Service.
Today, police are releasing images from that camping site for the very first time.
The images show food, equipment and weapons seized from the scene, along with detailed hand-written notes about surviving on the run from police.
The documents further detail threatening to kill anyone who recognises him.
A number of highlighted newspaper job advertisements were also located at the campsite.
Detective Leading Senior Constable Brendan Finn from the Fugitive Taskforce said police were releasing the images today as a reminder that search for Potter remains active and ongoing.
“Police have been looking for this man for over nine years and he one of the most significant fugitives on our books,” he said.
“This is a man with a significant history of violent offending and not someone we want out there in our community.
“We have regular engagement with other law enforcement agencies across Australia because the reality is, he could be anywhere in the country at this time.
“The notes in particular show that’s committed to blending in – we suspect particularly in rural areas – and to remain out of police custody.
“Hopefully by releasing these new images and getting his photo circulated again, we may get some new information that could potentially lead to his arrest.”
Police believe Potter is likely to be living in a rural area and despite Victoria Police leading the investigation, his connections to the state are minimal.
In recent years police received information about unconfirmed sightings of Potter however despite ongoing searches and several nation-wide public appeals, he has managed to evade police capture.
Det LSC Finn said Potter had developed a number of skills and habits to help him evade capture.
“We know he is known to disguise himself using hair colour, wigs and fat suits,” he said.
“Potter also has a number of manual labour skills, which allows him to seek work in a wide range of places.
“He has welding, bee keeping, hydroponics, aquaphonics, gold prospecting and earth moving skills, and is most likely to look for work as a caretaker, farm hand or outback station hand.
“Potter is known to live in rental homes and caravan parks, and has the ability to camp out.
“All of this means he’s very comfortable laying low in remote and regional areas, so we really urge people in those locations and industries to continue to keep a look out for him.”
Potter has a history of befriending women and in the past, formed a friendly relationship with an elderly widow who took him in as a lodger.
A friend of the woman’s recognised him and confronted Potter, who then threatened to kill the woman if she went to police.
Detectives believe it’s likely he may have formed a relationship with a woman of a similar age or older and are especially warning woman in rural areas to be on the lookout for him.
“This is not a man you want as a friend,” Det LSC Finn said.
“This is someone who has a history of incredibly significant violence, including the murder of a woman in NSW, and there’s nothing to indicate that he won’t act with violence again.
“I’d urge people to look at the images of Potter we’re again releasing today and share them with as many people as you know – particularly friends or associates you might have in rural or remote areas.
“Someone knows where he is and has the right piece of information to lead to his capture.”
A $100,000 reward was announced in February 2011 for information leading to his capture and this reward remains in place.
Potter is currently facing criminal charges of conspiracy to murder and is also wanted in relation to serious Commonwealth drug charges.
Since Potter failed to appear at Melbourne Magistrate’s Court in 2010, Victoria Police has been working closely with other federal and state law enforcement agencies to try and determine his location.
A number of images of Potter have been released and he has been seen with a ginger beard and dyed brown hair to avoid detection.
He is described as Caucasian, 175cm tall, medium to solid build, fair complexion, brown eyes, brown greying hair and a ginger beard.
He is known to wear a gold sleeper earring in both ears, wears glasses and regularly wears a gold chain around his neck.
Potter has a propensity for changing his appearance and has used a number of aliases including Josh Lawson, John Page, Jim Henderson and Peter Adams.
Anyone who sights Graham Gene Potter is advised not to approach him but contact triple zero (000) immediately.
Anyone with any information regarding his whereabouts is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or visit www.crimestoppers.com.au.