Personal tools

Skip links and keyboard navigation

You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases Media releases — 17 July 2009 – 30 June 2010 CMC directs Police Commissioner to take action — 17.06.2010
You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases Media releases — 17 July 2009 – 30 June 2010 CMC directs Police Commissioner to take action — 17.06.2010
You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases Media releases — 17 July 2009 – 30 June 2010 CMC directs Police Commissioner to take action — 17.06.2010

CMC directs Police Commissioner to take action — 17.06.2010

The Crime and Misconduct Commission has directed the Queensland Police Commissioner to report back within fourteen days about what action he intends to take against six officers involved in two police investigations relating to the Palm Island death in custody of Mulrunji.

The direction is contained in a CMC report, tabled in State Parliament today, which reviewed an internal Queensland Police Service (QPS) review of the original police investigation into the November 2004 death of Mulrunji.

CMC Chairperson Martin Moynihan AO QC says that both the initial police investigation and the subsequent internal police review were seriously flawed.

‘While there is insufficient evidence to support the laying of any criminal charges, the conduct of four officers involved in the original police investigation is serious enough to warrant recommending consideration of disciplinary proceedings for misconduct,’ Mr Moynihan said.

‘The CMC has also recommended that the Queensland Police Service consider disciplinary proceedings against the members of the internal investigation team.’

‘Although they did not act in isolation and the Police Commissioner supported the review process, these officers are not without fault. They were obliged to adhere to high ethical standards.’

‘I am now looking to the Police Commissioner to acknowledge the flawed and unacceptable conduct of the officers involved in both the initial police investigation and the QPS review,’ Mr Moynihan said.

‘He must step up, take strong, decisive action and restore the confidence of the public - and of its own members - in the police service.’

‘If the CMC is not satisfied with the Commissioner’s intended course of action, then the CMC will assume responsibility for the matter and apply to the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal to commence disciplinary proceedings.’

Mr Moynihan says that both police investigations suggest there is a belief within QPS that the best way to protect the reputation of the police service is for officers to turn a blind eye to actions of their colleagues which are sub-standard.

‘The investigations were characterised by double-standards and an unwillingness to publicly acknowledge failings on the part of the police,’ Mr Moynihan said.

‘The Police Commissioner has tolerated these self-protecting aspects of the culture and must be held accountable for the flawed Palm Island review. He supported and defended the police review process, including the spirit and intent of the findings.’

‘This attitude is eroding public confidence as well as debilitating the morale of good officers and unfairly tarnishing them.’

‘The Police Commissioner must now demonstrate to his officers that this conduct is not acceptable and will no longer be tolerated.’

‘He must rid the service of these destructive aspects of the police culture. The only way the police service can promote public confidence and protect its reputation is to expose any shortcomings, not ignore them.

‘The people of Palm Island should have received a thorough and impartial police investigation. They were also entitled to a rigorous and independent internal police review when the initial investigation was criticised by the Acting State Coroner in 2006. They received neither.’

‘I know that this has been a long and difficult process for the Doomadgee family and those involved in the matter. The CMC is very appreciative of their patience, assistance and trust.’

‘The delay should in no way be taken to imply that we did not understand the importance of the issue. Quite the contrary — we believe this report to be an important one and we have taken time to do justice to the complexity of the evidence.

View the full report – CMC Review of the Queensland Police Service’s Palm Island Review.


For further information contact:
Leanne Hardyman, Mobile:  0407 373 803     Fax:  3360 6235

Last updated: 18 January 2012
For all media enquiries, please contact:

[email protected] or
07 3360 6000

Rate this page

How useful was the information on this page?