Trail Trap: Trespassing or Attempted Murder?
Earlier this week, we shared a Facebook post containing images and information about a rider called Rafael Moss who’d badly injured himself on the far south coast of NSW after running into a stainless steel cable that had been erected across the trail he’d been riding on with one of his mates. And it prompted a torrent of comments, most of which called for legal action (or worse) to be taken against the property owner, who is assumed to have erected this ‘barrier’.
Considering that Rafael Moss claims to have hit the wire cable “pinned in fourth gear, and stopped me near dead”, he was damned lucky not to be garrotted and killed. A couple of days later, he spoke with two newspapers (the Bega District News and Daily Mail Australia) from his ICU hospital bed, after his arm had been operated on he’d been treated for three broken ribs. But there were several questions left unanswered in both of those May 12 newspaper articles about the accident, which happened at about 1.30pm on Saturday, May 9, in Quarantine Bay Estate area, south of Eden on the NSW far south coast. For example:
- Was the trail in fact on private property? If so, did Rafael and/or his riding mate realise they were on private property?
- Was this wire cable a deliberate trap for dirt bikes, or erected to prevent vehicles from entering the property? Or both?
- Is it relevant that this wire barrier was ‘signposted’, as suggested by local police?
- What charges do the police intend to lay, if any, on the person(s) responsible for the ‘signposted barrier’ and/or on the two dirt bike riders involved?
- Why the conflicting accounts of whether Rafael hit the wire while heading towards the Highway or away from the Highway? The riders said they believed the track to be part of a fire trail.
- A spokesman from the NSW Police said officers from the South Coast Police District told the Daily Mail that “investigations were ongoing”, but when can the public expect to hear what those investigations revealed?
To clear up these question marks over the accident, we contacted Rafael directly for comment, and we are awaiting his response. We also plan to speak with the police in charge of the investigation. Stay tuned for developments.