Azaria Chamberlain dingo case: Sister of baby snatched by Australian wild dog becomes dingo handler

Case surrounding death of nine-week-old became hone of Australia's most infamous criminal cases when parents were wrongly jailed for murder

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The Independent Online

In a strange twist to an already bizarre tale, the half-sister of a baby girl killed when she was snatched by dingoes in Australia has become an advocate for the very animals that took her.

The death of nine-week-old Azaria’s became one of the county’s most famous criminal cases after her parents Michael and Lindy Chamberlain were wrongly jailed for her murder in 1982.

They were exonerated five years later, but it was only in 2012 that a coroner finally supported the couple’s claim that their baby had been taken by a dingo while they camped out at Uluru (formerly Ayer’s Rock) in 1980.

Born years after the tragic event that shaped her father’s life, 18-year-old Zahra Chamberlain, daughter to Michael and second wife Ingrid, has revealed her love for Australia’s native wild dogs and desire to help protect them.

Speaking exclusively to the Australian Sunday Mail, the student said she her new-found passion had helped “heal” her father’s animosity towards the animals “to a degree”.

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Michael and Lindy Chamberlain

She added: “Dad’s pretty supportive, he’s very proud that I’m doing this on my own and making an impact and doing something good for the environment.

“In the past, I wouldn’t really talk about dingoes at all because it would hurt him or create an awkward atmosphere, but now I can talk about them because it’s for a different reason, I guess.

“[But] you wouldn’t catch him holding a dingo puppy.”

The subject of dingoes divides the nation, explained Zahra, with some people viewing them as a pest that should be eradicated while others thought of them as a cuddly pet.

Earlier this year Zahra accepted an invitation to the Durong Dingo Sanctuary near Kingaroy, northwest of Brisbane, to spend time learning about dingoes.

The journey to the sanctuary involves a flight from her home in Lake Macquarie, New South Wales.

The inquest that finally cleared her father’s name once and for all was the fourth to have taken place looking into the death of Zahra’s half-sister.

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