Slovenian Criminal Hiding Out In Australia Because He Loves Poker Machines

Slovenian Criminal Hiding Out In Australia Because He Loves Poker Machines

A man from Slovenia who is accused of child sex offences is allegedly hiding out in Melbourne. The man has apparently been there for years, and police have been unable to track him consistently to arrest him. It is believed that the man chose to escape to the Australian city because of his love for playing poker machines and gambling.

Federal Agent Jesse Whyte told the Herald Sun recently that police have pinpointed Joze Smit’s movements. Smit, 58, is wanted for child sex offenses in Slovenia. Whyte states that Smit is “known to be a real fan of cheap poker machines, 20c machines and so on.” The federal agent also stated that police have tracked Smit to an Essendon business after getting a tip from someone who used to work with Smit in the hospitality industry. The man who provided the tip stated that Smit would visit TAB venues and pokie locations in Essendon nearly every day, starting at about 11 am.

The man also stated that Smit is “known to work cash jobs throughout hospitality. I do have reports he has also worked in cash jobs in construction and laboring.” Whyte also added that the informant gave more details of Melbourne locations were Smit was often seen looking for pokies and TAB facilities. The federal agent stated that the details were corroborated by employees or managers of the venues Smit visited, as well as people who live near these facilities.

According to Whyte, business owners were “shocked and unsettled” when Smit would get up quickly and leave. Smit’s actions likely suggested that he moved on to another facility when he got nervous. Whyte asserts that since Smit has avoided police attention for so long, it is not likely that the criminal will turn himself over to the authorities. This is somewhat astounding, since Smit has been part of the Melbourne community for quite some time. Whyte stated, “Although he is well aware that authorities are looking for him, once he adopts a community, everybody seems to know who he is.”

Additional Information

Joze SmitIn addition to the reports, there have also been sightings of Smit in Kew and Heidelberg. The Australian Federal Police have followed up on this. Police officers have warned citizens that Smit is considered dangerous and that they should not approach him.

Smit goes by the names of Joze Smit, as well as Joseph Smit and Joza Smit. He is wanted for several crimes that he committed in Slovenia, his home country. It is believed that Smit has been living in Australia for almost a decade (since 2000). After his visa expired, an Extradition Arrest Warrant was issued for him by Interpol in the summer of 2017.

Whyte did not give specific details about the child sex offences that Smit is wanted for. The agent reiterated his participation in the case, and that he and his team were committed to bringing Smit to justice after apprehending him.

Smit was reportedly last seen in October 2018 in Essendon. He is known to visit businesses located near Mount Alexander Road and Lincoln Road, frequently.

Australian Federal Police have also issued an updated E-fit of Smit, hoping that a citizen with recognize him and assist in the investigation. Smit is described as being 5’ 7”, and is stocky and tall. He is white with balding dark hair and brown eyes. Police have encouraged anyone with additional details to report these details to the authorities or contact Crime Stoppers at 1800 333 000. The calls will be anonymous. Authorities believe that they are likely close to catching Smit, and that his gambling habits may lead them to an arrest in the near future.

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