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Tuesday, 4 September 1984
Page: 393


Senator HILL —I direct my question to the Minister representing the Special Minister of State. It also follows those questions asked on 23 and 24 August, relating to the hand-over from the Costigan Royal Commission on the Activities of the Federated Ship Painters and Dockers Union to the new National Crime Authority. I remind the Attorney-General that on 24 August he promised to obtain details of the personnel involved in sifting through suggested references from Mr Costigan to the Authority. I ask: Apart from Mr Phillip Cummins, QC, who are the lawyers making up the team referred to by the Attorney on the 23rd of last month? When did each of the lawyers, including Mr Cummins, begin work, and how many hours has each been able to devote to the task? How many matters are expected to be ready for presentation to the meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee which the Attorney said would be held within the next few weeks? Is there a firm date for that meeting?


Senator GARETH EVANS —I have no reason whatever to suppose that the hand-over from the Costigan Commission to the National Crime Authority, being supervised as it is by Mr Justice Stewart, Mr Max Bingham, QC-a former Liberal Attorney- General of Tasmania-and Mr John Dywer, QC, of the Melbourne Bar, will be anything other than expeditiously and professionally carried out. As to the remaining questions in Senator Hill's list I ask him to put them on notice.