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An aviation researcher, writer, aviation participant, pilot & agricultural researcher. Author of over 35 scientific publications world wide.

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Is #casa emulating the improper NSW ICAC actions??

In NSW, the ICAC [NSW’s corruption watchdog]  investigations have directed at evidence gathering with the Cuneen case, which showed improper collection and clear falsification of video evidence in the collection of a phone from Cuneen. This progressed to the High Court, with serious doubts being raised about evidence gathering.

The latest revelations go even further and in today’s Australian, garner a different emphasis – the withholding of information by ICAC.

The practice of suppressing ­exculpatory evidence from public hearings could be even more widespread, with ICAC Inspector David Levine confirming he had received several complaints.

Mr Levine said he would investigate the complaints after his report into prosecutor Margaret Cunneen’s case was completed.

Mr Kear’s solicitor, Greg Goold, said the audio of Mr Morrow’s original interview with ICAC contained additional mat­erial favourable to Mr Kear that was apparently not included in the statement ICAC prepared and handed to the DPP.

“The statements were handed to the DPP but the interview ­Morrow had with the ICAC ­investigators was not initially ­provided and had to be called for.

“Morrow has confirmed the statement from ICAC was not his entire statement.”

This situation has particular relevance to how #casa carries out “investigations” and it’s prosecutions. Further the carriage of FOI [Freedom of Information] requests, which are slow, incomplete or simply just refused.

There are a series of examples, of which only three are detailed below, which should be examined in the harsh light of public opinion.

John Quadrio:

  • Withhold subpoena evidence;
  • Withhold information on prime #casa witness [subsequently turned out to be a known criminal;
  • Refusal to supply video evidence [“left it in Canberra”] to AAT;
  • Use of low resolution video in AAT, when high resolution video showed the evidence that would have demonstrated the presence of birds in the area of the alleged ‘dangerous flight’;
  • #casa shopping for a compliant Flight Inspector and refusal to use inconvenient and opposite evidence;
  • Why the CDPP refused to prosecute the criminal case – Just bad evidence;
  • Why #casa continued with the ‘show-cause’ CAR 269 case into the AAT, where the evidence is not required to be as robust as in a Court;
  • How #casa has been allowed to continue to fail to meet it’s internal Code of Practice in these types of cases;
  • Caused the recent threatening of a witness in Cairns who was instrumental in proving the case that John Quadrio was not guilty of an offence and that #casa manufactured evidence.

John, almost 7-years later does not have his licence back.

Lockhart River Tragedy:

Shane Urquhart, who met the 10-year mark of his battle for justice on 7th May 2015, still faces:

Shane continues to delve into the issues surrounding this preventable accident and the culpability of the regulator – #casa.

PelAir ditching at Norfolk Island [18th November 2009]:

All the crew and those involved have been supported by a Senate inquiry and a subsequent ASRR inquiry into #casa and #atsb for improper activities.

  • Failure by #casa to release documents;
  • Failure by #casa to meet FOI requests;
  • pelAir give donations to political parties in 2009, despite never having this largesse before;
  • John Sharp, #PelAir Board member remains Treasurer of the Nationals;
  • Minister Truss says in Courier Mail in September 2014 that he “….can’t control #casa….”;
  • Failure by #casa to pass on a highly critical document of an inquiry [Chambers report] to #atsb;
  • Denial by McCormick [#casa CEO] of any wrong doing [McCormick announces his resignation in February 2014];
  • February 2015, #atsb claim to have “found life jackets”;
  • Death of Bernie Currall – the patient who had struggled with the ditching circumstances;
  • #atsb finally lifted the data and CVR recorders from the sea surrounding Norfolk Island.

The families continue their struggle for information and for a proper outcome. Dominic James, despite meeting #casa requirements has faced a whispering campaign.

Latest #atsb information:

Updated: 12 November 2015: During the afternoon of 11 November 2015, the rear section of VH-NGA, which contained the flight recorders, was lifted onto the deck of PMG Pride. Both the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder were removed from the wreckage and placed into sealed containers in preparation for transportation to the ATSB’s technical facilities in Canberra. The part numbers and serial numbers of the recorders agree with the maintenance documentation for the aircraft. The recovery and storage of the recorders was witnessed by an officer of the Australian Federal Police. Examination of, and data recovery from, the recorders is expected to commence during the week of 16 November 2015.

 Updated: 9 November 2015  In March this year, an underwater survey of the Pel-Air aircraft wreckage was conducted by the ATSB with the assistance of NSW state and federal police officers. The survey was conducted to establish the condition of the wreckage and to assess a viable means of recovering the flight recorders. Subsequently, a commercial marine salvage company, the Pacific Marine Group, was selected through a tendering process to contract with the ATSB to complete the operation. The salvage vessel, PMG Pride, is currently underway from her home port of Townsville and is expected to arrive at Norfolk Island in the next few days.

Early this week investigators from the ATSB, along with an officer from the Australian Federal Police will be working together with the project team from Pacific Marine Group to raise the Pel-Air wreckage and recover the flight recorders. The recorders will be transported back to the ATSB headquarters in Canberra for download and analysis. The data on the ‘black boxes’ will be used to further assist the ATSB investigators understand the sequence of events of the accident.

The ATSB requests that all local vessels remain away from the Pel-Air wreckage site throughout next week. The PMG Pride will be at anchor and there will be divers and salvage equipment in the water.

 

Inaction by #casa in the Coroner’s Courts


 

ICAC ‘omitted’ statement from evidence to DPP on Murray Kear

Media Editor
Sydney
ICAC ‘omitted’ statement from evidence

Former commissioner of the NSW SES, Murray Kear. Source: News Limited

The NSW corruption watchdog handed over evidence to the ­Director of Public Prosecutions that allegedly omitted statements made in favour of former NSW SES commissioner Murray Kear before his criminal trial.

State Emergency Service assistant commissioner Mark Morrow gave a long statement to ICAC that is understood to include material supporting Mr Kear that was then not provided to the DPP.

The evidence emerged in a hearing in Sydney’s Downing Centre Court on October 14 in a case between ICAC and Mr Kear, who is charged with breaching the Whistleblowers Act. The alleged omission casts doubt over the ­effectiveness of NSW Premier Mike Baird’s compromise for the DPP to act as a check on ICAC.

The latest claim follows ICAC’s investigation into former Labor minister Ian Macdonald — who faces charges of misconduct in public office — where evidence ­favourable to him by Labor frontbencher Anthony Albanese was suppressed.

The practice of suppressing ­exculpatory evidence from public hearings could be even more widespread, with ICAC Inspector David Levine confirming he had received several complaints.

Mr Levine said he would investigate the complaints after his report into prosecutor Margaret Cunneen’s case was completed.

Mr Kear’s solicitor, Greg Goold, said the audio of Mr Morrow’s original interview with ICAC contained additional mat­erial favourable to Mr Kear that was apparently not included in the statement ICAC prepared and handed to the DPP.

“The statements were handed to the DPP but the interview ­Morrow had with the ICAC ­investigators was not initially ­provided and had to be called for.

“Morrow has confirmed the statement from ICAC was not his entire statement.”

Under Mr Baird’s new ICAC legislation passed this week, the watchdog has the power to ­initiate criminal proceedings enshrined in law, despite misgivings from legal authorities including ICAC architect Gary Sturgess, who said he remained “absolutely” convinced anti-corruption bodies should have their work ­reviewed by independent bodies.

The charges against Mr Kear came after ICAC found he had acted corruptly when he sacked his deputy, Tara McCarthy, as a reprisal for her making misconduct allegations against former SES deputy commissioner Steve Pearce.

Mr Kear denies the allegation.

The comparison of the audio and the transcripts prepared by ICAC are likely to come under the microscope in February when Mr Kear’s matter is back before court.

“If the initial ICAC hearing was in any way deficient, then that’s going to reflect on the criminal proceedings which he (Kear) now faces,” Mr Goold said.

Former ICAC inspector Clive Small said ICAC’s withholding evidence in favour of a person under investigation was a serious matter.

“In recent times particularly, ICAC have had a number of ­serious and diverse complaints raised against it and those matters are still under consideration by a range of bodies,” he said.

“The general issue of how they treat evidence obtained in-­camera and how they treat evidence that’s given in the open commission proceedings has also been a contentious issue. The withholding of evidence in favour of a person they are looking at by not producing it in public hearings is another serious matter that warrants serious consideration.”

Mr Small said governments that gave bodies such as ICAC heightened powers had an ­additional responsibility to ensure those powers were not abused.

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