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Thursday, 28 March 1985
Page: 1004


Senator Sir JOHN CARRICK(5.59) —I wish to ask a wider question on this matter of indemnity. As I understand it, it appears that some 31 police officers worked in concert over a very long period at taping phone calls. It seems that they had some systematised method of being on duty so they could do this. By an accident of the fact that one police officer was on duty at a particular time when the evidence that he taped answers the qualifications put on by the Attorney-General (Mr Lionel Bowen), it appears that he can get an indemnity. Why should not members of the whole team get the indemnity if it was a systematic search to get information by way of police intelligence ultimately to bring about a prosecution? Why should the good luck of a policeman who was on duty and taping at the time be the test? If it was the intention of the other policemen to take this action, however illegal, to gain information to work ultimately towards a prosecution, the team had the same intent as the officer who may be granted indemnity. I am quite puzzled why one member is picked and not the team. The only way one could get a policeman to come forward and be sure that his giving information would not penalise him is for indemnity to be granted to the team.