Witness identity protection for operatives
Part IACA of the Crimes Act 1914 (the Act) provides a statutory scheme for Commonwealth law enforcement agencies, including the Department of Home Affairs (the Department), to give witness identity protection certificates in the investigation of Commonwealth offences.
Under sub-section 15MU(1) the Department is also required to provide a report to the Minister as soon as practicable after the end of the financial year, in regards to witness identity protection certificates given by the chief officer during that year detailing:
- the number of witness identity protection certificates given
- on what basis the chief officer was satisfied about the matters mentioned in paragraph 15ME(1)(b) for each certificate
- if disclosure of an operative's identity to a presiding officer was required by section 15ML-details of the proceeding in relation to which disclosure was required and details of the things that the presiding officer required the operative to do under that section
- if leave was given or an order made under section 15MM in a proceeding in which a witness identity protection certificate for an operative was filed-details of the proceeding that relate to the leave or order
- if leave was given for joinder of a person as a respondent to proceedings under section 15MN-details of the person who was joined and who appeared on their behalf
- if leave was given for an adjournment under section 15MP-details of whether an appeal was made against the decision under that section
- if a witness identity protection certificate was cancelled under section 15MQ-the reasons why the certificate was cancelled
- if a permission was given under section 15MR-the reasons why the permission was given
- any other information relating to witness identity protection certificates and the administration of this Part that the Minister considers appropriate.
Sub-section 15MU(4) of the Act requires the Minister to table a copy of the report to be before each House of the Parliament within 15 sitting days of that House after the day on which the Minister receives the report.