The Plot Thickens

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D.P.P. “Lost the Plot” Say Police

When a relatively senior police officer accuses the DPP of having “lost the plot”, you have to wonder exactly what “plot” he is talking about.

For the age-old prosecutorial system of the police investigating and charging while the prosecutors prosecute, seems to have slipped the mind of this detective.

He must surely know and should have remembered that the decision to investigate in the celebrated Canberra case, was made by the police.

They not only chose to investigate but upon investigating the evidence they chose to charge the individual. They were not compelled to charge as the discretion was entirely theirs.

Having chosen to investigate and then chosen to charge, the police (again) decided to send the case to the D.P.P. whose only function was to make two decisions.

First, was there a reasonable prospect of a conviction and second, was it in the public interest to prosecute this alleged serious offence.

When the police sent the file to the D.P.P. the time for them to influence whether or not a trial would be had, was long gone. It is no part of their function to tell the D.P.P. which cases sent to him should be prosecuted and which cases should not.

Bleating about the decision to prosecute at this stage plainly showed that this particular officer himself had difficulties with “the plot” and failed to understand what the true role of the police and the D.P.P. are.

Stephen Pallaras

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