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Torbanlea link to 40-year-old cold case

HOMICIDE detectives investigating new leads in one of the state's most high-profile cold cases are still seeking retired Torbanlea gangster Gary "Shorty" Dubois.

No arrest warrant has been issued but police have confirmed they wish to speak to the former underworld figure about the 1974 disappearance of Barbara McCulkin and her two daughters near Brisbane.

Fresh evidence in the triple murder investigation led police to a property near Warwick, where bags of cannabis and $300,000 in cash were allegedly seized earlier this week.

A man was arrested at the scene and is assisting police with inquiries.

The property was close to another owned by Mr Dubois' former associate and alleged cannabis kingpin Vincent O'Dempsey, who is also being sought for questioning.

A coronial inquest ended in the arrest of both men in the 80s but murder charges were later dropped due to lack of evidence.

It was alleged at the time that Ms McCulkin had inside knowledge of activities carried out by the Clockwork Orange crime gang, of which Mr Dubois was an alleged member.

Police have travelled to the region in the past week but the Chronicle understands Mr Dubois is out of town.

It had been reported Mr O'Dempsey had "gone to ground" in recent weeks after learning of developments in the case.

Asked yesterday whether detectives had been able to make any contact with Mr Dubois, a Queensland Police spokeswoman said, as the investigation was active, no further comment could be made.

Queensland Homicide Squad Superintendent Mick Holahan previously told reporters in Brisbane the raids were carried out as a result of police "broadening" their investigations.

Mr Dubois and his wife Jan moved to the Fraser Coast more than five years ago and have been regular stallholders at the Howard markets.

Anyone with information can phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Topics:  cold case, missing, mystery, torbanlea




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