This is the report of an internal review, headed by former NSW Chief Justice Sir Laurence Street, looking at the way in which the AFP works with its partner agencies on counter-terrorism investigations. The committee made recommendations covering the four broad areas of operational decision-making processes, joint taskforce arrangements, information sharing, and training and education.
The AFP has accepts all the recommendations and will work closely with the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) and other national security agencies to ensure the recommendations are implemented as soon as possible. ASIO officers will soon be attached to the Melbourne and Sydney Joint Counter-Terrorism Teams (JCTT), ensuring better communication between the agencies at an operational level. The AFP will act immediately on the recommendation to participate in exercises simulating the investigation and prosecution of terrorism offenders in Australia and more will be done to retain expertise in the joint counter-terrorism teams.
In relation to the other recommendations:
• the AFP will develop a joint operations protocol with ASIO,
• guidelines will be drafted on the role of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions in counter-terrorism investigations; and
• a committee comprising the AFP Commissioner, the Director-General of Security and Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions will be established to ensure national security issues, strategic priorities and enhanced interoperability are reviewed on a regular basis.
Recommendations relating to enhanced information technology systems and information sharing will be managed in stages over the coming months.