The ABC has the good news that long overdue integrity testing is coming for AFP, Crime Commission and Customs officers:
Under the plan, Australian Federal Police, Crime Commission and Customs officers could be offered fake bribes, or confronted with valuable items planted in suspicious shipping containers or crime scenes to tempt them.
The so-called ‘integrity tests’ would target officers suspected of corruption.
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“It will be controversial, these are tough new powers, but there’s no place for corruption in our law enforcement agencies and where it exists I am determined to weed it out,” Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare said.
The union is, of course, agin’ it.
UPDATE 30/03/12 12:35: The Ministerial media release is now available with considerably more detail.
“There is no place for corruption in our public service,” Mr Clare said.
“It is a fact that law enforcement officers are targeted by criminals because of the nature of their work.
“Where we find corruption we have to weed it out. This will help weed it out.
“The power of integrity testing is that it puts fear in the mind of people thinking of acting corruptly.
“They will need to think twice before accepting a bribe from a criminal because that criminal could be an undercover police officer.”
Under the legislation the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity and agencies including the Australian Federal Police, the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Crime Commission will have the power to conduct targeted integrity testing.
The Integrity Commissioner or the head of the agency will be responsible for authorising integrity tests.
The Integrity Commissioner will have overall oversight of the integrity testing system and will be made aware of all integrity tests being undertaken by agencies.
Oversight will be provided by the Commonwealth Ombudsman and the Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity.
Employee representatives are also being consulted on the development of the system to ensure appropriate safeguards are in place.