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‘The world has become a darker place for us’: Parents of murdered Australian brothers pay emotional tribute



The parents of Jake and Callum Robinson have made an emotional statement about the loss of their sons, saying: “The world has become a darker place for us.”

“It is with heavy hearts that we share the news that Callum and Jake have been murdered,” mother Debra Robinson said. 

“Our hearts are broken and the world has become a darker place for us.

“We also mourn the loss of [Jack] Carter Rhoad, a close friend. They were young men enjoying their passion of surfing together.” 

Debra and Martin Robinson said it was time to bring their boys home. (ABC News)

Debra and Martin Robinson were speaking from the beach in San Diego that was their son Callum’s local surf break and adopted home in the United States.

After making the journey to California from their home in Perth, the couple travelled across the border into Mexico to identify their sons over the weekend.

“Now it’s time to bring them home to family and friends and the ocean waves in Australia,” Ms Robinson said.

“Please live bigger, shine brighter and love harder in their memory.”

Callum and Jake smiling and holding a dog.

Callum and Jake Robinson disappeared while camping on Mexico’s west coast.(Instagram: @Callum10Robinson)

The couple painted a picture of their two sons — close brothers and much-loved friends to many.

“We have always been very proud of their academic and sporting achievements, and admired their life choices,” Ms Robinson said.

“Callum was a lovable, larger-than-life character and considered the United States his second home.

“Known as the big koala, he played professional lacrosse in the PLL [Premier Lacrosse League] and represented Australia in the world championships and always found time to coach junior teams.”

Ms Robinson said Jake was “a happy, gentle and compassionate soul who was pursuing a career in medicine”.

“Jake’s passion was surfing and it was no coincidence that many of the hospitals that he worked in were close to surfing beaches,” she said. 

A close up shot of Debra as she pauses and brings her hand to her face to calm herself.

Debra Robinson, mother of murdered brothers Jake and Callum, spoke from San Diego. (ABC News)

Ms Robinson said she knew how much her sons were loved. 

“We have been overwhelmed with the outpouring of emotions and support that we have received for Callum and Jake,” she said.

“We know that they were truly loved and impacted many people’s lives.” 

Martin Robinson thanked friends and family who had been “a massive support” to the couple as they left Australia to find their sons and over recent days. 

He also thanked consulate staff, Australian agencies and Foreign Minister Penny Wong. 

“I’d like to thank Foreign Minister Wong, who took time out of her busy schedule yesterday to call us with support,” he said. 

Charges expected to be upgraded

The bodies of Callum and Jake Robinson are believed to still be in Mexico as the family works through the logistics of getting their boys home. 

The two Australian brothers, along with their American friend, had been travelling the Baja California coastline on a surf trip when the Robinsons raised the alarm that their sons had not been in contact or checked into their accommodation as planned.

Two men stand together with their arms around each other

Jake and Callum Robinson left for their surfing trip from San Diego and travelled just inside the US-Mexican border. (Supplied: Instagram)

On Friday morning local time, the bodies of the three missing men were found near a cliff on the Pacific coast, a local government official in Mexico’s north-west told the ABC.

The attorney-general for Baja California says their primary hypothesis is the men were killed in a robbery gone awry, with the murderers attempting to steal the tyres off a ute before being confronted.

But given the level of cartel activity in the area, authorities say they can not rule out organised crime links. Particularly given the men’s bodies were found in a well with a seemingly unconnected victim.

Mexican national Jesús Gerardo Garcia Cota, who is also known by the alias “El Kekas”, had been charged with forced disappearance before the bodies were formally identified.

He is expected to be charged with the three murders and will appear in court tomorrow.

His brother, Christian Alejandro, and romantic partner 23-year-old Ari Gisell Silva Raya were also arrested in relation to the disappearances but have not been charged.

The attorney-general has previously indicated more than one person will be charged over the murders.

People march down a street surrounded by palm trees. Some hold surfboards with messages in Spanish.

People marched in Ensenada, including one holding a surfboard that said, in Spanish, “Australia we are with you”.(ABC News: Carrington Clarke)

The murders forced a crowd of about 500 people onto the streets of Ensenada, with protesters chanting in Spanish, “we want security”. 

Some held surfboards with messages including “Australia, we are with you” and “They only wanted to surf, and they executed them”.

Local surfers also participated in a memorial paddle out nearby at Playa San Miguel. 

In San Diego, another paddle-out planned for this Saturday will again honour the three men.

Posted , updated 

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