Legislative Council: Tuesday, July 05, 2022


Operation Ironside

The Hon. L.A. CURRAN (15:06): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking a question of the Attorney-General regarding Operation Ironside.

Leave granted.

The Hon. L.A. CURRAN: The recent state budget provides funding for Operation Ironside related matters. My questions to the Attorney-General are:

1. Have additional judge's associates been appointed under the funding for Operation Ironside?

2. If yes, how many have been appointed?

3. When will they commence?

4 Can the minister provide an update on the impact of Operation Ironside proceedings on productivity in our courts, in particular the District Court?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Attorney-General, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (15:06): I thank the honourable member for her question. The honourable member is correct that there was additional funding provided in this budget for courts. It included a number of elements for courts' operations, and one of those was for judge's associates. I don't have the details as to how many or when they will start, but I am happy to take that portion of the question on notice and bring back a reply.

As I answered to the honourable member's colleague earlier in question time, this is a very significant criminal justice undertaking with just under 100 people having been arrested, which is exactly why extra funding has been provided. It will help with security in courts, judge's associates, court layouts and also extra funding for the DPP. We want to make sure we can have the matters from Operation Ironside moved through the justice system—the police, the prosecutions and the courts—efficiently and effectively, but without funding that could impact on other things that courts would otherwise do, and we want to make sure we have as little disruption or impact on those as well.