Investigations and prosecutions update

Prosecutions arising from IBAC investigations are an important mechanism for exposing public sector corruption and police misconduct. They highlight the impact of corruption and its consequences for those involved, which may include jail terms, confiscation of assets, fines and community corrections orders. Prosecutions following investigations also serve the important function of deterring and preventing public sector corruption and police misconduct. Highlighting the existence and consequences of corruption and misconduct has the additional benefit of assisting public sector agencies and police to strengthen their practices.

This is a summary of IBAC statements from December 2019 to March 2020 about some of our operations and prosecutions. For more detail, please see our media releases or follow @ibacVic on Twitter for our latest announcements.

Victoria University employee sentenced to prison following IBAC investigation

On 27 March, a Victoria University employee was sentenced to prison following an investigation by the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) into the misappropriation of over half a million dollars of university funds. Ms Kamaljeet Kaur Gill was sentenced at the Melbourne County Court to three years and six months imprisonment after pleading guilty to the offences of misconduct in public office and obtaining property by deception and theft.

Victoria police officer found guilty of recklessly causing injury following IBAC investigation

On 4 March, a County Court jury found Victoria Police Officer Ross Fowler guilty of recklessly causing injury following an investigation by IBAC. The co-accused police officer, Travis Woolnough, was found not guilty.

The charges follow an IBAC investigation, Operation Mersey, into the conduct of the two officers during an incident in the Southern Metro area in 2016. IBAC charged the pair with assault related charges in December 2017.

Former client of St Paul’s Prevention Rehabilitation sentenced following IBAC investigation

On 7 February, a former client of St Paul’s Prevention Rehabilitation, Steven Sioulas, was convicted of trafficking cocaine and methylamphetamine and perverting the course of justice. The sentencing follows IBAC’s investigation, Operation Murano, into allegations of serious corruption at St Paul’s Prevention Rehabilitation, a registered charity based in Strathmore.

Mr Sioulas was sentenced to a two-year Community Corrections Order (CCO). Mr Sioulas also received a term of imprisonment for a separate unrelated Victoria Police matter. The CCO is to be served following his release from prison.

Former Victoria Police Inspector convicted following IBAC investigation

On 17 December, a former Victoria Police Inspector was convicted and fined following IBAC's investigation, Operation Salina, into allegations the police officer fraudulently took possession of a number of vacant properties.

IBAC's Operation Sandon second round of public hearings continue

IBAC has resumed the second round of public hearings into allegations of serious corrupt conduct concerning the transparency and integrity of planning and property development decision making, including donations to candidates in local and state government elections, at the Casey City Council.

These public hearings, which are part of IBAC's Operation Sandon investigation, will continue to hear evidence from witnesses involved in Casey City Council matters. IBAC will also more broadly examine the adequacy of Victoria's current systems and controls for safeguarding the integrity of the state's planning processes.