Investigation summaries

Operation Tarlo

In January 2018, IBAC commenced an investigation into allegations a corrections officer had introduced contraband into Fulham Correctional Centre, had inappropriate relationships with prisoners, and had unlawfully accessed information.

In December 2017 and January 2018, IBAC received notifications from the Victorian Ombudsman and the (then) Department of Justice and Regulation regarding the conduct of a corrections officer employed at Fulham Correctional Centre.

The notifications outlined allegations that the officer had introduced contraband into the facility, had inappropriate relationships with prisoners, and had unlawfully accessed the Prisoner Information Management (PIM) system.

In January 2018, IBAC commenced Operation Tarlo to investigate these allegations.


Shortly after IBAC commenced Operation Tarlo, the corrections officer resigned while under investigation. Partly in response to this resignation, IBAC discontinued its investigation.


  • IBAC identified a number of opportunities for the Department to strengthen its processes for identifying suspected corrupt conduct and ensuring allegations of suspected corrupt conduct are appropriately notified to IBAC. IBAC also sought clarification from the Department about an apparent delay in notifying IBAC of the correction officer’s suspected corrupt contact.

    In November 2018, the Department wrote to IBAC outlining the following actions it had taken to address the corruption vulnerabilities identified in Operation Tarlo.

    IBAC publishes responses to our investigations to inform the community about actions agencies advise they are taking, and to share learnings that may help other agencies improve their systems and practices to prevent corruption and misconduct.

  • Timely notification to IBAC of the correction officer's alleged corrupt conduct

    Corrections Victoria received 30 information reports containing various allegations about the corrections officer. The information reports received during 2015 and 2016 did not provide sufficient evidence to allow the Department to form a reasonable suspicion that the corrections officer was engaged in any form of corrupt conduct during this period.

    Both IBAC and Victoria Police were briefed on allegations concerning the corrections officer during 2017, before the decision to formally notify IBAC in January 2018.

    Reviewing and strengthening the approach to identifying officers who are the subject of multiple Corrections Victoria Information Reports and ensuring IBAC is notified where these reports create a reasonable suspicion of suspected corrupt conduct

    The Department continually reviews and strengthens its processes for referring allegations of suspected corrupt conduct to IBAC. Specific improvements actioned since these allegations were notified to IBAC in January 2018 include:

    • funding additional positions within Integrity and Investigations to support its fraud and corruption investigation and assessment activities
    • instituting weekly intelligence sharing meeting between relevant units
    • improving processes for referring information reports from the regions directly to Integrity and Investigations
    • instituting monthly intelligence sharing meetings with Victoria Police and IBAC
    • increased use of section 56 of the IBAC Act to share information with IBAC about potential corrupt conduct quickly as an additional avenue to notifying IBAC of suspected corrupt conduct under section 57 (1) of the IBAC Act
    • regular engagement between Integrity and Investigations and IBAC.