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War Crimes Act 1945—Report on the operation of the Act for 2013-14


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Annual Report on the Operation of the

War Crimes Act 1945

1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014

Attorney-General’s Department

ISBN: 978-1-925118-09-4

© Commonwealth of Australia 2014

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MINISTER’S INTRODUCTION

___________________________________________________

I am pleased to present the report on the operation of the War Crimes Act 1945 for the period 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014.

No prosecutions or investigations for alleged offences against the Act were commenced during the reporting period.

GEORGE BRANDIS QC Attorney-General

REPORT REQUIRED BY SECTION 21 OF THE WAR CRIMES ACT 1945 ON THE OPERATION OF THE ACT DURING THE YEAR ENDING 30 JUNE 2014

Australia is strongly committed to addressing war crimes and takes allegations of war crimes very seriously. The Criminal Code Act 1995, Geneva Conventions Act 1957 and Crimes (Hostages) Act 1989 target potential war crimes and crimes against humanity in the modern era. However, the War Crimes Act 1945 (the Act) was enacted specifically to enable the prosecution of Australian citizens or residents who are known to have

committed war crimes in Europe during the Second World War.

Section 21 of the Act requires the Attorney-General to, as soon as practicable after 30 June in each year:

(a) cause a report about the operation of the Act during the year ending on that 30 June to be prepared, and (b) cause a copy of the report to be laid before each House of the Parliament within 15 sitting days after it is prepared.

Number of suspected offences against the Act under investigation during the reporting period

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) did not receive any referrals of alleged war crimes during the period 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014.

COMMONWEALTH DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS

Number of Prosecutions Commenced

The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (CDPP) did not commence any prosecutions under the Act during the period 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014.

Resources of the CDPP allocated to War Crime Prosecutions

Nil.

AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE

The AFP did not receive any referrals or commence any investigations into allegations of war crimes relevant to the Act during the period 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014.

Resources of the AFP allocated to War Crime Investigations

Nil.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE PROVIDED BY THE LEGAL ASSISTANCE BRANCH [ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT]

Financial Assistance Expenditure

There was no financial assistance expenditure under the Act during the period 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014.

Resources of the Legal Assistance Branch applied for the purposes of the defence

Nil.

INTERNATIONAL CRIME COOPERATION CENTRAL AUTHORITY [ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPARTMENT]

Mutual assistance and extradition

Australia did not receive any mutual assistance or extradition requests concerning war crimes committed during the Second World War during the period 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014.