Court of Appeal ruling in Red Devils case welcomed
For Immediate Release
15 October 2013
Association welcomes Court of Appeal ruling in Red Devils case
The Court of Appeal’s decision to overturn a High Court stay of prosecution against 21 Red Devils gang members and associates is the right decision, because it is in the public interest that those accused of serious offences face trial, Police Association President Greg O’Connor said today.
“The Police action in staging a prosecution of its undercover officer, in order to deepen his cover, never had any bearing on the evidence against the gang members and associates,” Mr O’Connor said.
“For that reason, the Association always believed the High Court stays were legally questionable, regardless of the rights or wrongs of the earlier Police action.
“In staying the prosecution, the High Court judge – in seeking to punish Police for behaviour he described as a ‘discourtesy’ to the Court – was actually punishing the community. Let’s not forget the reason why police go undercover to combat gangs: it is because they cause enormous harm in the community through drug dealing and involvement in other serious crime.
“It is in the community’s interests that those accused of such offences are made to answer the charges against them in court. The Court of Appeal’s ruling now clears the way for that to happen in this case,” Mr O’Connor said.