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ABC’s Juanita Nielsen documentary removed from iView

ABC’s Juanita Nielsen documentary removed from iView as the network investigates possible inaccuracies


One of ABC’s most popular true crime documentaries has been removed from iview over potential inaccuracies. 

The two-part television series Juanita: A Family Mystery has been taken down from the streaming platform so that the network can verify claims made by interviewee John Innes.

ABC addressed the issue in a statement to TV Tonight following a report in The Australian.  

The two-part series Juanita: A Family Mystery has been taken down from ABC’s iview so that the network can verify claims made by interviewee John Innes

‘It is important to note that the program makers attempted to verify those claims, such as by speaking with and / or seeking interviews with current and former NSW Police officers, including those Mr Innes said he worked with in the early 1980s,’ they said.

‘The program makers also sought comment from NSW Police, which chose not to repudiate Mr Innes’ claims until after they were broadcast,’ ABC continued.

‘However, while some information concerning Mr Innes was not available to the program makers, we acknowledge that additional steps should have been taken to verify his claims.’

In addition to the series being taken down, episodes seven and eight of the Juanita: A Family Mystery podcast were removed to. 

The true crime miniseries explores the mystery around journalist and activist Juanita Nielsen’s death.

Juanita, who owned alternative paper NOW, disappeared from the centre of Sydney’s seedy underbelly 46 years ago in one Australia’s most notorious unsolved crimes.

At the time, the 38-year-old was a fierce activist who used her publication to campaign against developers to protect heritage buildings in Potts Point and promote the Builders Labourers Federation’s controversial green bans during the 1970s. 

Juanita, who owned alternative paper NOW, disappeared from the centre of Sydney's seedy underbelly 46 years ago in one Australia's most notorious unsolved crimes

Juanita, who owned alternative paper NOW, disappeared from the centre of Sydney’s seedy underbelly 46 years ago in one Australia’s most notorious unsolved crimes

Nielsen has never been found and no one has ever been charged in relation to her disappearance, although It is widely believed she was kidnapped and murdered because of her anti-development and anti-corruption campaigns.

She was the great-granddaughter of businessman Mark Foy and an heiress to his retail empire. 

On the morning of July 4, 1975, Juanita walked into the Carousel Cabaret – a Kings Cross nightclub run by an associate of notorious underworld crime boss Abe Saffron – and was never seen again.

Her handbag was found on the side of a highway leading to the Blue Mountains, 60km west of Sydney’s CBD, eight days later.

She was the great-granddaughter of businessman Mark Foy and an heiress to his retail empire (pictured with father Neil Smith)

She was the great-granddaughter of businessman Mark Foy and an heiress to his retail empire (pictured with father Neil Smith)

During initial investigations, police uncovered a plot to kidnap Ms Nielsen four days before her last known sighting.

Three men – including a Carousel Club employee – were charged with conspiracy to kidnap in 1977 and two were subsequently convicted of conspiracy to kidnap her, but no charges have ever been laid over her later disappearance.

A coronial inquiry in 1983 found Ms Nielsen was likely dead, but despite the case generating extraordinary publicity, her remains have never been found.

In June, NSW Police announced the reward to solve the case had been doubled to $1million as her devastated loved ones pleaded with anyone with information to come forward so she could be given a proper burial.

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