My colleague Simon Breheny has an article in The Australian today, arguing that the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption should be abolished by the state government. This follows from a judgment in the High Court of Australia last week that found the commission was acting outside of its already broad powers:
[ICAC] is adept at taking down political figures who fail to declare bottles of wine on the pecuniary interests register. But it is comparatively incompetent at uncovering cases of serious corruption. This is despite the fact ICAC is given coercive powers and routinely flouts the rule of law.
ICAC should be abolished.
This week, ICAC released a statement in response to the decision handed down by the High Court of Australia. The case hadn’t gone ICAC’s way and it lashed out at the highest court in the land, demanding retrospective laws to effectively reverse the court’s decision.
[T]he demand for retrospective legislation is a shameful attempt to smash the pillars of justice that support our legal system. ICAC has taken it up on itself to revisit 800 years of English common law.