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Minister evasive on DLA Piper justice

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Minister evasive on DLA Piper justice

March 7, 2012

The release today of the first part of the long-awaited DLA Piper review hardly inspires confidence for former ADF personnel who lodged a complaint with the review.

Shadow Defence Minister David Johnston said it was concerning that 775 complaints were found to be plausible but he was not surprised and neither should the Minister be.

“In 2005 the Senate carried out an inquiry into military justice and many former ADF personnel saw the terms of reference as an opportunity to seek redress and now the Minister has rekindled their expectations,” Senator Johnston said.

“The Defence Minister has opened up a Pandora’s Box with this review and he doesn’t seem to have a plan as to where the inquiry is leading or how he is going to deal with the many serious issues raised.”

“His evasiveness on the issue today does not bode well.”

“I have spoken with several of the complainants and they were all very courageous in re-opening old wounds with this inquiry and it is of utmost importance it is handled with sensitivity and expeditiously.”

Senator Johnston said he was greatly concerned the entire exercise would turn into a lawyers’ feast, with expectations unfulfilled in spite of $8 million already paid to DLA Piper.

“Whether or not the complainants will see a cent in compensation is another matter entirely - I remain sceptical.”