Murderer up for parole after 22 years inside
MURDERER Bevan Meninga could be granted parole release on Friday after about 22 years in jail.
But if the Queensland Parole Board indicates it will refuse him bail, he will get another chance next month in the Brisbane Supreme Court to plead his case for release.
The jailed brother of Queensland rugby league great Mal Meninga says he has been eligible for parole since 2005.
He was sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering Sunshine Coast teen Cheree Richardson in 1991 at Alexandra Headland.
Meninga was on parole at the time for bashing another woman with a stake in her home.
During a brief hearing on Wednesday, the supreme court heard the parole board had a duty to make a decision on his release within 180 to 210 days of receiving a prisoner's application for review.
Lawyer Julie Devery said Meninga was forced to go above the board when it failed to do so.
"My client is not prepared to wait any longer," she said.
Counsel for the parole board requested an adjournment until after Friday's hearing.
The court heard the board could either grant parole release or make a preliminary refusal which would allow Meninga to make further submissions before a final determination was made.
Justice Anthe Philippides agreed with Meninga's lawyers that if a negative finding was indicated, he should be allowed a judicial review on February 13 "given the amount of time that has elapsed".
"I think it's appropriate that the matter proceed," she said.
"If a decision is made and if it's not necessary to proceed further with this application, so be it."
Meninga is currently in the Palen Creek Correctional Centre at Rathdowney.