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Independence

The Independent Police Conduct Authority is fully independent – it is not part of the Police.

‘Independence’ means that the Authority makes its findings based on the facts and the law. It does not answer to the Police or anyone else over those findings. In this way, its independence is similar to that of a Court.

There are three aspects to the Authority’s independence.

Legislative independence

The law requires the Authority to act independently in performing its statutory functions and duties such as investigating complaints and incidents involving death or serious injury.

The Authority’s status as an independent Crown entity means that there is no political involvement in its operations.

Operational independence

The Authority is chaired by Judge Sir David Carruthers, and its decisions and actions reflect that judicial independence.

The Authority also has the power to direct or oversee Police investigations.

Its investigators independently investigate the most serious complaints and incidents, such as those involving fatalities or allegations of serious misconduct. The integrity of this work is assured through the creation of investigation teams and through oversight from the Manager:Investigations and Reviews, the Manager: Report Writing, the Group Manager: Operations and the Authority Chair.

Most complaints to the Authority are referred to the Police for investigation and resolution. The Authority independently oversees Police handling of these complaints. The form of that oversight depends on the  nature of the complaint, but can include independent review or audit of the Police investigation.

The Authority maintains a register of conflicts of interest and has systems in place to manage conflicts when they arise.

The perception of independence

The Authority reports publicly on all independent investigations.

 

 

 

 

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