$500k reward for historic NQ murder case

October 13, 2023 5:52 am in by

A $500,000 reward has been announced for information into the 1982 murder of Anthony Jones.

20-year-old Anthony Jones, known as Tony, was last seen on or about November 12, 1982, in Hughenden.

Police say last spoke with family at approximately 8:50pm on November 3, advising them he planned to hitchhike from Townsville to Mount Isa.

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Investigations identified that the phone call came from a telephone box at Bowen Road in Townsville.

Tony never made it to Mount Isa as planned and has not been heard from since, with investigators believing he was murdered.

Police have identified multiple witnesses that can place Tony as being in Hughenden on November 12, where it is believed he attended the Grand Hotel that evening.

Investigations indicate Tony may have been involved in an altercation at the hotel that night, prior to his disappearance.

On January 19, 1983, police received a handwritten letter under the name ‘Lochiel’ postmarked from Cairns, indicating Tony may have been buried in the Fullerton River.

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The following day an extensive search of the area commenced and was cleared without any items of interest being located.

Over the following years, police investigations included approximately 60 statements and 270 inquiries completed by investigators.

A number of persons of interest have been investigated, and numerous land-based searches conducted in areas including the Fullerton River, Cloncurry River and Hughenden Slaughter yards.

At the time of his disappearance Tony was carrying a Voerre .22 calibre rifle with serial number 257435, a large blue backpack with aluminium framing and green sleeping bag, a green one-man tent, along with various personal items such as toiletries.

None of these items have ever been recovered.

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In 2002, the Coroner ruled that Anthony Jones was deceased and had died at the hands of a person or persons unknown.

With active investigations underway, detectives from Townsville Criminal Investigation Branch (CIB) were approved to increase the reward on offer to $500,000.

Detectives will be conducting further investigations in Hughenden on Saturday, October 14 and Sunday, October 15, and urge any community members with information to come forward.

Detective Sergeant Brenden Stevenson of Townsville CIB says police are confident someone out there has the information needed for the matter to be solved.

“More than 40 years has passed now and in that time loyalties change, any information no matter how small or insignificant it may seem, could be the key to bringing closure for Tony’s family,” Detective Sergeant Stevenson says.

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“If you were in Hughenden or at the Grand Hotel on the 12th of November in 1982, you may have seen something that could be crucial to this investigation, it is never too late to come forward.

“We are also urging anyone with any information at to the whereabouts of Tony’s rifle, or the identity of the person who posted police the letter from Cairns in 1983, to please contact police.”

The $500,000 Queensland Government Reward is for information which leads to the apprehension and conviction of the person or persons responsible for this murder.

The Government reward further offers an opportunity for indemnity against prosecution for any accomplice, not being the person who actually committed the murder, who first gives such information.