Compo for failed SA ICAC cases: report

A committee has investigated the damage caused by some investigations launched by the SA ICAC.
A committee has investigated the damage caused by some investigations launched by the SA ICAC.

Compensation should be considered and legal costs paid to people subject to a number of failed investigations or prosecutions instigated by South Australia's corruption watchdog, a state parliamentary committee has found.

The committee investigated the damage and harm caused by some investigations launched by the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption including a number of cases where prosecutions were dropped or failed in the courts.

"Many of the witnesses told the committee that they would like to be fairly compensated for the way that the failed ICAC investigations ruined their life," the final report tabled in parliament said.

"They also note that they would like to be compensated for the loss of career progression and their lifelong health issues."

In other recommendations, the committee said a protocol should be established for the publication of details where a person had been exonerated.

"This would avoid ongoing reputational damage to persons not subject to adverse findings," it said.

"An individual's reputation could be restored in a timely manner before findings and recommendations are finalised and the public would be better informed."

The committee said its work in relation to some ICAC investigations was frustrated by the hostile behaviour from a number of police witnesses, including their refusal to answer questions or non-attendance at hearings.

"The decision by witnesses not to provide evidence has constrained the committee and its ability to consider fully all issues within its terms of reference," the report said.

Australian Associated Press