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Kel Glare on the $1 million reward to nab Mr Cruel

Tom Elliott
Article image for Kel Glare on the $1 million reward to nab Mr Cruel

The former police commissioner who oversaw the investigation into the abduction of Karmein Chan has said her murder is one of the cold cases he would most like to see solved, and that her killer is likely to still be alive.

Kel Glare served as Police Commissioner from 1987 – 1992 and worked with the Chan family after thirteen-year-old Karmein was abducted from her Templestowe home by a man dubbed by the public as ‘Mr Cruel.’

Mr Glare said that he knew from early on it was unlikely Karmein would ever be found alive, and that Mr Cruel had a unique understanding of forensics, enabling him to cover his tracks.

‘Protecting his identity was more important than her life,’ Mr Glare told Nick McCallum. ‘So the indication was there that if one of these girls actually saw him then they wouldn’t live to tell the tale.’

‘This particular offender was very aware of forensics…a number of things he did indicated that he was absolutely acutely aware of forensics.’


Karmein was thirteen when she was abducted.

Related: Huge reward to nab ‘Mr Cruel’

On the identity of Mr Cruel, Mr Glare dismissed theories that police had a number of key suspects.

‘It’s a big step between not being able to rule people out, and ruling people in,’ he said. ‘All sorts of theories abound, but until the offender is actually caught no one will really ever know’

‘Given the ages, I think probably…the chances are that the person would still be alive.’

Mr Glare said he felt a strong responsibility to answer questions about the case in the hopes it will one day be solved. 

Scroll down for full audio.

Click PLAY to watch former Police Commissioner Kel Glare talk about one of Melbourne’s most infamous cases.


Click PLAY to listen to Former Police Commissioner speak with Nick McCallum

Earlier in the day Tony Jones spoke with Stephen Fontana on why the reward has been escalated.

Click PLAY to hear Crime Command Assistant Commissioner Stephen Fontana speak with Tony Jones 



Tom Elliott