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Half a million dollars offered over unsolved murder of Queensland dad



A $500,000 reward is being offered by the Queensland government in return for information that helps convict someone over the unsolved murder of father Francis Patrick Foley.

Foley was last seen at his home in the Reward Fossicking area near Rubyvale, west of Emerald, on or around December 23, 2008.

On that day, the 62-year-old went Christmas shopping at the Emerald Central Business District with a neighbour before returning home.

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The same neighbour then called into Foley's property on December 28 to check on his welfare after local flooding and found an exploded gas bottle and Foley's wallet discarded in the carport.

Foley could not be found.

Police found blood, which was later identified as belonging to Foley, at the scene.

Investigations over the years since have included about 100 statements and 150 inquiries by police.

A door knock was conducted in the area, during which several neighbours reported hearing what they believed to be gunshots on the afternoon and evening of either December 23 or December 24.

Foley's son Shaun Charlton told media today he has missed his dad for 15 years.

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Shaun Charlton, the son of missing Queensland man Francis Foley

"I'm from a small town, I know the sort of town Rubyvale is, and I know people know," Charlton said.

"Please help me find my dad's killer and help my family find my father's killer."

Police said investigations determined the damage to the gas bottle and further damage to the front security door of the home were consistent with having been hit by a shotgun blast.

Mackay Coroner David O'Connell returned findings in April 2013 which determined Foley was believed to be deceased, but evidence was unable to be identified connecting anyone to Foley's death.

A person fossicking for gems in Sheep Station Creek, about a kilometre downstream from Foley's property, found human remains in July 2022.

The remains were identified as belonging to Foley and police started a review of Foley's death.

Foley moved to the Rubyvale area around 2003 and worked in various trades including carpentry, building and vehicle repairs.

At the time of his disappearance, he was a caretaker for a fossicking lease on behalf of a person who lived interstate.

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Queensland Police Detective Senior Sergeant Tara Kentwell said police are confident the matter can be solved.

While it is not believed Foley was a gem miner, it has been identified he owned a number of valuable gemstones.

Police are again searching the area where Foley's remains were found today.

Detective Senior Sergeant Tara Kentwell said police are confident the matter can be solved.

"Someone out there knows what happened to Foley and they now have 500,000 reasons to come forward and speak to police," Kentwell said.

"Anyone with knowledge of Foley's movements on December 23, 2008, or who may have information relating to this investigation, is urged to contact police."

The $500,000 Queensland government reward is for information that leads to the apprehension and conviction of the person or persons responsible for this murder.

The government reward further offers an opportunity for indemnity against prosecution for any accomplice, not being the person who actually committed the murder, who first gives such information.

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