Orkopoulos spent 11 years in jail for drug supply and child sexual offences
Former New South Wales Labor minister Milton Orkopoulos has been granted parole after serving 11 years in prison for drug supply and child sexual offences.
Orkopoulos was on Friday paroled after being jailed for 30 convictions including supplying cannabis and heroin, sexual intercourse with a male between 10 and 18 years and possessing child pornography.
Orkopoulos, now 62, was the NSW Aboriginal affairs minister in the Iemma Labor government when arrested in November 2006 for assaulting three male victims aged 15 to 20 from 1999 to 2005.
The Serious Offenders Review Council and Community Corrections recommended he be released on supervised parole with conditions.
The state parole authority, chaired by Justice James Wood, on Friday granted him parole on conditions including he not contact his victims, not enter the Lake Macquarie and Newcastle areas and not be in the company of anyone under 16 years old unless in the company of a responsible adult.
He will also be subject to electronic monitoring and placed on the children protection register.
His earliest release date was 18 May 2017, while his total term will expire on 18 October 2021.
He is now eligible to be paroled between 20 December 2019 and 3 January 2020.
He was paroled despite failing two drug tests while in jail, including one in February this year when he tested positive to the opioid buprenorphine.
Justice Wood said Orkopoulos’ best chance of rehabilitation was through parole as he could access treatment and supervision he would not otherwise receive.
“Release at the end of the sentence, without the opportunity of a supportive transition to the community through a period of parole supervision, is only likely to increase the risk to the community safety,” Wood said.