Independent Police Conduct Authority senior investigator Bob Grinstead has been appointed to head an international team investigating post-election violence in Kenya. The investigating team will support the work of Kenya's Commission of Inquiry into Post Election Violence, which was established in May and started work this month.
The Commission's tasks include investigating the violence that followed the 2007 Kenya presidential elections, investigating the actions of state agencies during the violence, and making recommendations aimed at bringing those responsible for the violence to justice and preventing similar outbreaks of violence in future.
Former New Zealand Assistant Police Commissioner Gavin McFadyen is one of two international members of the three-person Commission, which is headed by Justice Philip Waki of the Kenyan Court of Appeal.
Mr Grinstead is a former Inspector with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, where his roles included serving as manager of national security investigations and heading investigations on drug enforcement and people-smuggling. He led investigating teams for the Yugoslavia War Crimes Tribunal in 1998-99, and for United Nations missions in Sudan (2005-06), Jamaica (2002) and East Timor (2000-01).
He has worked for the Authority from 2003-05 and from 2006 to the present. He is a Canadian citizen and a New Zealand permanent resident.
Mr McFadyen said Mr Grinstead's 'special knowledge, experience, skills and abilities' combined to make him a first choice to head the Commission's investigating team. The complexity of the work and the tight timeframes - the Commission has to report within three months - meant it was important to have the right people in investigating roles.
Authority Chair Justice Lowell Goddard said the Authority fully supported Mr Grinstead's appointment 'to this demanding and very significant international role'.
Mr Grinstead left New Zealand on Saturday. He has been appointed for a period of eight weeks. Other Authority staff will continue to make progress on Mr Grinstead's investigations during his absence.