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Brereton report lawyer fears veteran suicide in wake of horrific findings

Article image for Brereton report lawyer fears veteran suicide in wake of horrific findings

There are grave fears for the mental health of Australian veterans caught up in public outcry over the 39 unlawful killings identified by the Brereton inquiry.

Glenn Kolomeitz, an Army lawyer who advised personnel who gave evidence to the inquiry, described his clients’ sense of both “relief and tension” in the wake of the report’s release.

“All of our clients have mental health conditions, so the delay has just tended to aggravate those conditions,” he told Deborah Knight.

“We’ve checked on the welfare of some of our guys this morning, and they’re not in the best state of mind.”

He expressed concern that those current and former soldiers who gave evidence would be “tarred with the same brush” as the “bad eggs” in the Defence Force.

“Deb, I’ve already lost one of my clients to suicide … a very courageous former commando, a man of integrity who came through and handed himself in and blew the whistle.

“He could no longer obviously deal with what was hanging over his shoulders.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview

If you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or BeyondBlue on 1300 224 636.

 

Image: Getty

 

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Deborah Knight
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