The Australian Lawyers Alliance is concerned at a newly-published judgment revealing Tasmania police acted unlawfully in bugging a Risdon Prison meeting room for two months.
The bungled warrant saw the perverting justice case against Sue Neill Fraser’s lawyer Jeffrey Ian Thompson thrown out.
Tasmania Police has come under fire from Supreme Court Justice Michael Brett for failing to switch their listening device off when Thompson wasn’t in the room, resulting in unrelated, privileged lawyer-client conversations being recorded.
“The public interest in ensuring that such conversations are protected from unlawful surveillance by law enforcement authorities is of significant importance,” said his Honour.
“Accordingly, while it appears that police did not deliberately set out to break the law, there was also an obvious misunderstanding or ignorance of the significant risks inherent in their task and a casual and incomplete approach to the identification and minimisation of any such risks.”
The ALA’s Greg Barns has told Local Radio it’s outrageous.
“Most people should be horrified that this could happen,” he said.
“I’m not saying that this was deliberately done by police…but it’s a very, very serious matter.”