CRIMES ACT 1914

Part ID - Forensic procedures  

Simplified outline of operation of Part

This Part provides for forensic procedures to be carried out on:

  • · suspects in relation to indictable offences (Divisions 3 , 4 and 5 ); and
  • · offenders in relation to prescribed and serious offences (Division 6A ); and
  • · volunteers (Division 6B ).
  • If the carrying out of a forensic procedure is authorised under this Part, it must be carried out in accordance with rules and procedures set out in Division 6 .

    If a forensic procedure covered by this Part is carried out without proper authority under this Part, evidence obtained through the procedure may be inadmissible in proceedings against the suspect (Division 7 ).

    However, certain rules are modified or do not apply if the forensic procedure is carried out in response to a request by a foreign country or an international tribunal, or a request by a foreign law enforcement agency (Division 9A ).

    This Part also:

  • · contains offences in relation to the Commonwealth DNA database system and the National Criminal Investigation DNA Database ( NCIDD ) (Division 8A ); and
  • · provides for the whole or a part of the Commonwealth DNA database system to be integrated with the whole or a part of one ore more State/Territory DNA database systems to form part of NCIDD (Division 8A ); and
  • · provides for the exchange of information in the Commonwealth DNA database system or a State/Territory DNA database system and the protection of the information that is exchanged (Division 11 ); and
  • · provides for the destruction of forensic material (Division 8 ).
  • Division 9 - General provisions relating to operation of this Part  

    SECTION 23YO   DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION  

    (1)  


    A person commits an offence if:


    (a) the person has access to any information stored on the Commonwealth DNA database system or NCIDD or to any other information revealed by a forensic procedure carried out on a suspect, offender or volunteer; and


    (b) the person ' s conduct causes the disclosure of information other than as provided by this section; and


    (c) the person is reckless as to any such disclosure.

    Penalty: Imprisonment for 2 years.

    (1A)  


    Paragraph (1)(a) does not apply to access to information stored on NCIDD in the circumstances permitted by subsection 23YDACA(2) .

    (2)  


    A person may only disclose information stored on the Commonwealth DNA database system or NCIDD for one or more of the following purposes:


    (a) the purposes of forensic comparison in the course of a criminal investigation by a constable or other person prescribed by the regulations;


    (b) the purposes of making the information available, in accordance with the regulations, to the person to whom the information relates;


    (c) the purposes of administering the Commonwealth DNA database system, NCIDD or a State/Territory DNA database system;


    (d) the purposes of any arrangement mentioned in subsection 23YUD(1) or (1A) entered into between the Commonwealth and a State or Territory for the provision of access to information contained in the Commonwealth DNA database system or a State/Territory DNA database system by law enforcement officers or by any other persons prescribed by the regulations;


    (da) the purposes of assisting a foreign country or international tribunal to decide whether to make a request;


    (e) the purposes of, and in accordance with, the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 1987 , the International Criminal Court Act 2002 , the International War Crimes Tribunals Act 1995 or the Extradition Act 1988 ;


    (f) the purpose of a coronial inquest or inquiry;


    (g) the purposes of an investigation by the Information Commissioner or the Ombudsman of the Commonwealth or of a participating jurisdiction.

    (3)  
    A person may only disclose information revealed by the carrying out of a forensic procedure as follows:


    (a) if the person is the suspect, offender or volunteer to whom the information relates;


    (b) if the information is already publicly available;


    (c) in accordance with any other provision of this Part;


    (d) in accordance with the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 1987 , the International Criminal Court Act 2002 , the International War Crimes Tribunals Act 1995 or the Extradition Act 1988 ;


    (e) for the purposes of the investigation of any offence or offences generally;


    (f) for the purpose of a decision whether to institute proceedings for any offence;


    (g) for the purpose of proceedings for any offence;


    (h) for the purpose of a coronial inquest or inquiry;


    (i) for the purpose of civil proceedings (including disciplinary proceedings) that relate to the way in which the procedure is carried out;


    (ia) for the purpose of dealing with or investigating, under Part V or the Australian Federal Police Act 1979 , an AFP conduct or practices issue (within the meaning of that Act) that relates to the way in which the procedure is carried out;


    (j) for the purposes of the suspect ' s, offender ' s or volunteer ' s medical treatment;


    (k) for the purpose of the medical treatment of the victim of an offence that there are reasonable grounds to believe was committed by the suspect;


    (l) if the suspect, offender or volunteer consents in writing to the disclosure.

    (4)  
    This section does not apply to information that cannot be used to discover the identity of any person.




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