Where to seek help with police complaints around Australia
In New South Wales?
Redfern Legal Centre
Legal Aid NSW
Legal Aid NSW provides legal advice and assistance to people who have a complaint about the way they have been treated by police. Free legal advice is available at a number of civil advice clinics around Sydney and New South Wales. To find your nearest Civil advice clinic, call Law Access on 1300 888 529 or visit our website at www.legalaid.nsw.gov.au.
Peter O’Brien Solicitors
(02) 9261 4281 or 0421 373 961 (24 hour phone/SMS)
Suite 504, Level 5, 233 Castlereagh Street, Sydney 2000
Sydney Criminal Lawyers
Sydney, Liverpool, Parramatta
Call: (02) 9261 8881 24 Hours
Police Accountability Project
Call: 03 9376 4355
PO Box 487, Flemington, 3031
Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service
VALS provides legal assistance and support to Aboriginal people across Victoria. They have offices in Melbourne, Ballarat, Bairnsdale, Mildura, Shepparton, Morwell and Swan Hill.
1800 064 865
Robinson Gill Lawyers
Call: 03 9890 3321 or 1800 745 342
PO Box 140, Box Hill, 3128
In the Northern Territory?
North Australia Aboriginal Justice Agency (NAAJA)
(free call within the NT only) Darwin: 1800 898 251
0410 633 261
Throughcare: 1800 321 201
Katherine: 1800 897 728
0407 612 426
Alice Springs: 1800 636 079
Community Legal Centres SA
Community Legal Centres provide free legal advice, assistance and referral to community members who might otherwise not get the help the deserve. At each centre qualified solicitors, legal advisors and support staff will take the time to explain your legal obligations, your rights and your options. To find a Community Legal Centre in your area please visit the Community Legal Centres SA website.
Aboriginal Legal Rights Movement
The Aboriginal Legal Rights movement provides legal assistance to Aboriginal people across SA.
1800 643 222
Crime and Corruption Commission – The Commission has investigative, law enforcement, intelligence, witness protection, adjudicative and research functions that encompass almost all aspects of the criminal justice system.
You may wish to approach a community legal centre for assistance. To find your nearest community legal centre, please visit the Community Legal Centres Queensland website at www.communitylegalqld.org.au . There are a number of community legal centres throughout Queensland.
LawRight is an independent, not-for-profit, community-based legal organisation that operates a civil law referral service for pro bono legal representation and direct legal services for particular disadvantaged client groups.For more information about the help available, and the process for applying for help, please see the LawRight website at www.lawright.org.au
National Justice Project
NJP was established by Adjunct Professor George Newhouse and Lt Col (ret) Dan Mori. Through court work, research, training and strategic advocacy we use our skills to build a fairer justice system and more equitable society. We work collaboratively with our community partners to identify systemic injustice and with individuals to run test cases.
Call: 02 9327 228 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
PO Box 587 Woollahra NSW 1350′ to ‘5/22 Cooper Street, Surry Hills 2010
National Police Accountability Network (NPAN)
What is the National Police Accountability Network?
The National Police Accountability Network (NPAN) is open to barristers, solicitors and advocates in Australia who work to assist the victims of police misconduct and their family members.
NPAN works to end police abuse, neglect, violence and racism, and to ensure human rights compliant policing. The network aims to:
- Share resources and expertise across Australia such as relevant cases, systemic issues, legal options, experts for hearings on issues such as tasers, O/C spray etc.
- Provide a forum where people can ask non-confidential questions to others on strategies around cases involving police complaints, cover charges and human rights abuses.
- Increase the knowledge, expertise and support available to people assisting the victims of police misconduct, as well as to the victims and their families.
- Campaign for human rights compliant investigation and disciplinary mechanisms.
- Increase the access of victims of police misconduct to adequate remedies.
- Ensure that governments and police agencies learn from failures, protect human rights and comply with the law.
There are similar networks in place in the United States (the National Police Accountability Project of the National Lawyers Guild) and the United Kingdom (the Police Misconduct Lawyers Action Group).
Victorian Contact: Anthony Kelly
Executive Officer, Flemington Kensington Community Legal Centre
03 9376 4355
Info and Resources
Closing Ranks, (Video, March 2012) ABC Four Corners special report. Reporter Quentin McDermott puts together a forensic account of the events leading to the death of Adam Salter in NSW and the shooting itself. Using the testimony of family, ambulance officers and interviews with the police themselves, the program examines the mistakes made by the officers and the inconsistencies in their explanations for shooting Adam Salter.
The story of Adam Salter raises many questions, including the issue of how lethal force is used by police. But perhaps the most profound question it raises is: can the police be trusted to investigate themselves?
Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCIADIC) – 20 years on still waiting for police accountability National Police Accountability Network Media Release, 10 August 2011
New Call for Independent Investigations. Sydney Morning Herald, 22 March 2012.
Death in Custody of Kwementyaye Briscoe
Coronial Inquest into the death in custody of Kwementyaye Briscoe,(PDF) 17 September 2012. CITATION: Inquest into the death of Terence Daniel Briscoe  NTMC 032
Coronial inquest: The death of Kwementyaye Briscoe, Treaty Republic, January 2012
Alice Springs death in custody raises alarm The Australian, 4 February 2012
Lawyers call for independent probe into death Alice Online, 4 February 2012