Have you been summonsed before IBAC?
Since the introduction of the Independent Broadbased Anti-Corruption Commission Act (2011), IBAC has commenced investigations in to corruption at various levels of government and within government agencies. It is independent and has significant powers to investigate and summons individuals to give evidence before it. It’s purpose is to identify, prevent and expose corrupt conduct and misconduct within the public sector. It also has the function of assessing police personnel conduct. The Commissioner is an independent officer of the Victorian Parliament.
Recent investigations have included investigations into the Education Department and the Victoria Police, and have included investigations and examinations of individuals such as John Allman and Nino Napoli.
If you you have received a summons, do not discuss it with anyone and immediately consult a member of our experienced firm to provide advice and if required representation. Failure to comply with a summons may be an offence and penalties, including imprisonment, may apply.
A Confidentiality Notice may also accompany the summons, requiring you to discuss the summons only with your legal representative. Simply because you have received such a Summons does not necessarily mean that you are a suspect. You may be called and examined as a witness. You must read the Confidentiality Notice closely. Most confidentiality notices provide an exception which allows you to disclose that you have received the notice to your spouse, domestic partner, and employer, unless there is a good reason why you should not. However, competent and swift legal advice is imperative.
Corruption for the purposes of the IBAC Act is any conduct:
- by a person which adversely affects the honest performance by a public officer or public body or his/her functions as a public officer or public body;
- which occurs when there is dishonest performance of a public officer’s functions as a public officer; or
- involves knowingly or recklessly breaching public trust; or
- involves the misuse of information or material acquired in the course of the performance of his or her functions; or
- that could constitute a conspiracy; or
- an attempt to do any of the above.
Once a complaint is received by IBAC, it is assessed to determine whether it falls within IBAC’s functions and powers. If it does, it may be referred for an investigation by IBAC