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Australian Federal Police Annual Report 2012-13
The Australian Federal Police (AFP) is Australia's international law
enforcement and policing representative and the government's chief source of
advice on policing issues. The role of the agency is to:
...enforce Commonwealth criminal law, to contribute to
combating organised crime and to protect Commonwealth and national interests
from criminal activity in Australia and overseas. As a key member of the
national security community, the AFP leads and contributes to many
whole-of-government national security initiatives.
Section 8 of the Australian Federal Police Act 1979 (the AFP Act)
outlines the functions of the AFP including:
the provision of police services in relation to the laws of the
Commonwealth, the property of the Commonwealth (including Commonwealth places)
and property of authorities of the Commonwealth;
the safeguarding of Commonwealth interests and anything else that
is incidental or conducive to the provision of these services;
the provision of police services in relation to the Australian
Capital Territory and Australia’s external territories;
protective and custodial functions as directed by the Minister;
the provision of police services and police support services to
assist or cooperate with an Australian or foreign law enforcement agency,
intelligence or security agency or government regulatory agency; and
the provision of police services and police support services to
establish, develop and monitor peace, stability and security in foreign
The AFP's strategic priorities are determined in accordance with section
8 of the AFP Act and Ministerial Directions issued under subsection 37(2) of
the AFP Act.
Annual reporting and compliance
The AFP is required to prepare an annual report under section 67 of the
AFP Act. The section requires that:
(1) The Commissioner shall, as soon as practicable after
each 30 June, prepare and furnish to the Minister a report on the
administration and the operations of the Australian Federal Police during the
year that ended on that date.
(1A) The report must contain, in
respect of the year, prescribed particulars about:
- the AFP
conduct issues that were dealt with under Part V [Professional standards and
AFP conduct and practice issues] during that year; and
action that was taken, during that year, in relation to AFP conduct issues that
were dealt with under Division 3 of Part V [dealing with AFP conduct or
(2) The Minister shall cause a report furnished to him or
her under subsection (1) to be laid before each House of the Parliament within
15 sitting days of that House after the report is received by the Minister.
The AFP is a prescribed agency for the purposes of the Financial
Management and Accountability Act 1997 (FMA Act). As an FMA Act agency, the
AFP must comply with the Requirements for Annual Reports for Departments,
Executive Agencies and FMA Act Bodies,
prepared by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and approved by
the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit. The annual report's
compliance with these requirements is set out in a compliance index.
Based on the committee's assessment of the annual report, it fulfils
AFP focus 2012-13
During the reporting year, the AFP continued to focus on reducing
criminal and other security threats to Australia's collective economic and
societal interests. The AFP concentrated on five key areas, namely:
applying resources towards activities likely to have the greatest
impact on criminal networks and security threats both within Australia and
finalising planning for the construction of the modern
purpose-built forensic facility;
completing implementation of the Proceeds of Crime Litigation
business area as part of the Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce;
continuing to model the highest standards of professional and
public accountability; and
strengthening collaboration with domestic and international law
Proceeds of Crime Litigation
In relation to the third area concerning Proceeds of Crime Litigation,
the AFP has responsibility for the operational legal function aspect of
proceeds of crime litigation under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, the Mutual
Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 1987, the International Criminal
Court Act 2002 and the International War Crimes Tribunals Act 1995.
This function also provides legal advice involving all issues related to
proceeds of crime. The Proceeds of Crime Litigation group consists of 36
specialised litigators and support staff located across Australian with offices
located in Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney and Brisbane. The function
provides advice on asset confiscation to the Criminal Assets Confiscation
Taskforce, as well as independent proceeds of crime litigation services to the
AFP operational highlights in relation to the Proceeds of Crime
Litigation function included:
the full implementation of the function within the AFP with the
successful recruitment of specialised litigators and support staff;
the commencement of litigation of more than 145 matters and the
appropriation of 57 matters from the Commonwealth Director of Public
Prosecutions, including the restraint of $62.5 million of assets; and
the development of key policies, including the AFP Proceeds of
Crime Litigation Settlement Policy.
AFP achievements 2012-13
In the Commissioner's review, Commissioner Negus highlighted a number of
the AFP's 2012-13 achievements. They include:
meeting or exceeding all 33 key performance indicators;
a 93 per cent conviction rate for cases reaching court;
a 90 per cent satisfied/very satisfied rating in its survey of
stakeholders, the same result as for the 2011-12 period;
the seizure of 6.5 tonnes of illicit drugs, mitigating an
estimated $2.4 billion in harm to the Australian community;
the targeting of criminal wealth and the financial base of crime
through restraining $62.5 million in assets (59 per cent above the target); and
the finalisation of 490 cases reaching court, which represents a
38 per cent improvement on the previous financial year.
Commissioner Negus informed the committee that throughout the year in
review, the AFP had continued to build on its investigative capability, as well
as improving the use of resources and optimising the flexibility of its
workforce while strengthening relationships with partner agencies and
stakeholders. As a result, Commissioner Negus argued the AFP had built on its
previous year's positive results to produce 'outstanding results' for the
In terms of operational successes, the multiagency cooperative approach
of the AFP has resulted in notable domestic and international outcomes,
especially in Operation Marca.
This operation consisted of a joint task force incorporating the AFP, the
Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI) and the Australian
Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) that targeted corrupt activity
within the ACBPS at Sydney's international airport. Operation Marca resulted in
the seizure of 54 kilograms of pseudoephedrine and more than $235 000 in cash.
Another seizure of 585 kilograms of methamphetamine, worth up to $438 million,
was accomplished through the drug investigation of Operation Roselle. This was
reported as the largest ice seizure in Australia's history.
Finally, Operation Conqueror achieved good outcomes with a large-scale
investigation into child sexual abuse, resulting in 25 arrests.
Commissioner Negus also highlighted the importance of support officers who
aid frontline officers and create a 'unified workforce'. The Commissioner indicated
that the AFP was found to be the highest placed public sector employer of gay,
lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex members and received a 2013 Pride
in Diversity award.
AFP structure and performance measurement
The AFP's outcome and program structure for 2012-13 are set out in the
Attorney‑General's Portfolio Budget Statements.
1—AFP Outcomes and Programs
Outcome 1 contributes to reduced criminal and security
threats to Australia's economic and societal interests through cooperative
Program 1.1 National Security—Policing
Program 1.1's primary focus is on prevention. It comprises
the Counter Terrorism, Aviation and Protection functions.
Program 1.2: International Deployments
Program 1.2 delivers initiatives on behalf of the Australian
Government that are aimed at improving regional and international security,
stability and governance. It is supported by the International Deployment
Program 1.3: Operations—Policing
Program 1.3 seeks to reduce criminal threats to Australia's
collective economic and societal interests by employing a multidisciplinary
approach to combating crimes against the Commonwealth. The program comprises
the Serious and Organised Crime (which includes the International Network)
and Crime Operations functions.
Program 1.4: Close Operations Support
Program 1.4 provides specialist support to the AFP's national
security and operations programs, in particular keeping pace with
advancements in technology and science.
It comprises the Operations Support, Intelligence, Forensic
and Data Centres, and High Tech Crime Operations, Legal and Proceeds of Crime
Outcome 2 contributes to a
safe and secure environment through policing activities on behalf of the
Australian Capital Territory Government.
Program 2.1: ACT Community Policing
Program 2.1 provides crime and safety management, road
safety, prosecution and judicial support, and crime prevention.
Strategic Leaders' Group
The Strategic Leaders' Group (SLG) is the AFP's peak advisory committee.
Its membership consists of the Commissioner as Chair, Deputy Commissioners,
Chief Operating Officer, Chief Police Officer ACT Policing, National Managers
and two non-executive members. The SLG assists the Commissioner make decisions
and exercise his statutory responsibilities. The SLG also supports the
Commissioner in developing and enhancing partnerships with external
During the year in review, the SLG endorsed a new Strategic Risk Profile
based on best practice that will inform the AFP's strategic decision making in
planning and risk management;
resource allocation and investment priorities;
research and capability development priorities; and
the Strategic Audit Plan 2012–15 and the annual Audit Plan.
The SLG also considered other important issues such as the strategic
implications of the emerging operating budgetary environment, the Commonwealth
Law Enforcement Integrity Testing model, the development of the National
Security Strategy and the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper and
the AFP's annual intelligence assessment.
In April 2013, Mr William Laurie concluded his involvement with the AFP
SLG as a non-executive member. Subsequently, Professor Michael Wesley joined
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
In terms of performance over the review period, the AFP has 33 KPIs
relating to Outcome 1 and its four programs. According to the annual report,
the AFP met or exceeded targets for each of the 33 KPIs which:
...extends the record of strong results across all programs
since comprehensive reporting of KPIs against targets was introduced in 2009‑10...
Overall stakeholder satisfaction again reached 90 per cent, which is equal to
the highest recorded since the survey commenced. This is an important
achievement, given the increasing scope and diversity of the AFP's clients and
partners, 831 of whom completed the survey. Of these, 43 per cent were
from government, 38 per cent law enforcement and 15 per cent private sector.
While drawing attention to the AFP's success in meeting all the KPIs for
the first time, Commissioner Negus emphasised that not only were the targets
met, but many KPIs were improved upon from previous years:
...the AFP met or exceeded all 33 key performance indicators
listed in the portfolio budget statement—and...we are on track to do it again
this year with a few of those results yet to come in. In addition, the AFP
improved on the results of 11 of these indicators, including: community
confidence in aviation law enforcement and security; and community awareness of
Outcome 1—key highlights and performance
Program 1.1: National
Three major functions make up the program—counter terrorism, aviation
In relation to counter-terrorism, there are Joint Counter Terrorism
Teams in each Australian jurisdiction made up of members of the AFP, state and
territory police, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation and members
of other relevant agencies.
During the year, counter-terrorism training was provided to 97 members of the
Joint Counter Terrorism Teams and 40 members of international law enforcement
agencies in the region.
Other highlights for the year in relation to AFP counter-terrorism activities
the provision of investigative support to the Philippines
National Police Anti‑Kidnapping Group in its investigation of the 2011
kidnapping of an Australian citizen;
Operation Astley—which resulted in the arrest of one person for
'collecting or making documents likely to facilitate terrorist acts';
the investigation and prosecution of a man for offences related
to training in the use of arms or explosives or the practice of military
exercises with the intention of committing an offence against section 6 of the Crimes
(Foreign Incursions and Recruitment) Act 1978;
the establishment of a Counter Terrorism Liaison Officer position
in Beirut, Lebanon;
the implementation of the AFP Countering Violent Extremism
the enhancement of the capacity and capability to identify,
deter, prevent, disrupt and investigate terrorist activities through the delivery
of counter‑terrorism training.
The AFP achieved and exceeded its target in relation to all four KPIs
specific to counter-terrorism and one program-level KPI.
The 90 per cent target for KPI 5 concerning the 'percentage of counter‑terrorism
investigations that result in a prosecution, disruption or intelligence
referral outcome' was exceeded by 10 per cent to achieve a 100 per cent
The role of the AFP in relation to aviation is to contribute to law
enforcement and security at major Australian airports. The AFP is responsible for
managing criminal threats at Australia's ten designated airports—Adelaide,
Brisbane, Cairns, Canberra, Darwin, Gold Coast, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth and
Sydney and to deliver security on select Australian-flagged flights.
Some highlights during the year in relation to the AFP's aviation
188 078 prevention operations, patrols and other activities which
reduced the likelihood of terrorist or criminal activity occurring in the
responding to 22 340 incidents;
responding to 3422 unattended or suspicious packages; and
arrest of 392 individuals resulting in 35 charges.
With the Joint Airport Investigation Teams, a further 30 arrests were
made resulting in 91 charges.
There are three specific KPIs concerning aviation (KPI 6–8) as well as
the program level KPI regarding external client/stakeholder satisfaction noted
above. In relation to all three KPIs, the AFP exceeded its 2012-13 targets.
AFP protection is designed to keep safe those individuals and interests
identified by the Commonwealth as being at risk from acts of terrorism, violent
protest and 'issue-motivated violence'. Protection services include
high-visibility security for Commonwealth establishments, close personal
protection for Australian high-office holders while in Australia and when travelling
overseas, and administration of the National Witness Protection Program.
Highlights in relation to protection services over the reporting year
included the provision of protective security arrangements for:
the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games;
ANZAC Day ceremonies in Turkey and France; and
a visit by his Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and The Duchess
There are three KPIs relating to protection (KPI 9–11). Of particular
note is KPI 11 which concerns the number of avoidable incidents per 5000 hours.
The target for this KPI was less than four and the actual result was nil.
Program 1.2: International
The International Deployment Group (IDG) contributes to national
security by providing policing support for the delivery of programs that meet
the government's aid objectives by improving the capacity and effectiveness of
policing which furthers 'regional and international security, stability and
Highlights for the reporting year in relation to the IDG include:
the provision of 30 courses to develop the leadership and
professional capabilities of 6217 police force members in 16 countries;
the transfer of all police capacity development to key strategic
roles in Kabul with the completion of training commitments in southern
the withdrawal of the Participating Police Force in Solomon
Islands from all but two police posts, reflecting the increasing capacity of
the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force to operate independently.
Significantly, after 14 years the AFP's involvement with the United
Nations (UN) in Timor-Leste ended in December 2012 with the conclusion of the
United Nations Integrated Mission.
At its public hearing, committee members asked for an overview of the mission. The
AFP explained that the role of the UN in Timor-Leste was to provide support to
the country and develop its basic police force. Mr Peter Drennan, Deputy Commissioner,
National Security added that:
The UN presence there was about stabilisation and getting the
country to a point where it could start to rebuild. Parallel to that, we ran
what we called the Timor-Leste police development program which was about
building the basic capacity of the Timor-Leste Police...
In addition, Commissioner Negus highlighted that the AFP has removed its
presence from both Afghanistan and South Sudan.
There are six KPIs relating to international deployments (KPIs 12–17)
which were all met and in some instances exceeded. For example, KPI 16 concerns
the percentage of mission resources committed to countries with rule of law
indicators below the international median as determined by figures published by
the World Bank. The AFP exceeded its target of 80 per cent for KPI 16 in 2012-13
by achieving 90 per cent.
The same result was also achieved in 2011-12.
Program 1.3: Operations—Policing
The crime program comprises the serious and organised crime function and
the crime operation function. Its aim is combating organised crime nationally
and internationally with a focus on prevention and disruption.
Highlights for the reporting year in relation to this program include:
343 drug investigations (an increase from 329 the previous year)
which collectively led to the seizure of 5661 kilograms of illicit drugs;
restraint of $62.5 million in assets under the Proceeds of
Crime Act 2002;
arrest of six people smuggling organisers and 26 crew members;
arrest of 20 people for their involvement in the importation of
controlled precursors and corruption offences under Operation Marca.
There are six KPIs relating to this program (KPIs 18–23). The result in
relation to KPI 20 for operations–policing concerning the 'return on investment
for investigation of transnational crime' was seven, while the target was less
than one. In comparison, the 2011-12 result was eight.
Program 1.4: Close Operations
The close operations support program provides specialist support to the
AFP National Security and Operations programs 'particularly to address
advancements in technology and science'. It comprises the AFP forensic and data
centres, and the high tech crime operations, intelligence and operations
Highlights for 2012-13 included the processing of the following operational
requests by the Operations Coordination Centre:
492 family law orders and warrants;
74 931 INTERPOL communications (including search requests);
2227 national security hotline reports; and
7012 information reports.
There are ten KPIs relating to this program (KPIs 24–33). All of these
KPI targets were met or exceeded, including KPI 30 which concerns technology
crimes investigations and measures the number of high-impact to very
high-impact cases reaching court. The target for this KPI was 80 and the AFP
achieved a result of 101 cases.
In 2011-12 the target for this KPI was 70 and the AFP achieved a result of 109.
The percentage of scheduled deliverables completed for offshore
capacity-building projects is incorporated in KPI 28. The target for this KPI
was 80 per cent and the AFP achieved 100 per cent.
Operations and multi-agency taskforces 2012-13
The AFP leads Australia's capacity to detect and defeat serious and
organised crime by ensuring the ongoing implementation of response plans under
the Commonwealth Organised Crime Strategic framework.
In relation to illicit drug importation, 343 new drug investigations
were undertaken during the review period leading to the seizure of 5661
kilograms of illicit drugs.
Other operational highlights across the AFP's respective programs
Operation Hitch—a joint operation with the National Narcotics
Control Commission of the People's Republic of China which led to the seizure
of a further 15 tonnes of safrole oil (worth $520 million of pure
methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA)) and arrest of six individuals in China
and three in Australia;
Operation Nuance—an investigation that led to the dismantling of
an international organised crime syndicate covering Australia and some of
Europe, resulting in the seizure of 117 kilograms of MDMA with an estimated
street value of up to $52 million;
Operation Polaris-Whitesea—the seizure of over 12 tonnes of
illicit substances, 119 tonnes of illegal tobacco (worth about $77 million),
over $1 million in cash, 11 firearms, and the arrest of 44 people;
Operation Zaba—a people smuggling investigation which resulted in
the first successful extradition from Malaysia for people-smuggling offences,
resulting in a charge of 25 counts against the Migration Act 1958;
Operation Conqueror—the apprehension of 25 people for offences
concerning online child exploitation.
Many of these operations were carried out by joint taskforces
established as part of a response to the Commonwealth Organised Crime Strategic
Framework which emphasises a multi-agency approach. During the reporting year,
the AFP collaborated in joint operations and taskforces including:
Operation Marca—a multi-agency joint taskforce comprising the
AFP, ACLEI and the ACBPS which targeted corruption and organised crime within the
ACBPS at Sydney International Airport. The taskforce has resulted in the arrest
of 20 people, the seizure of 54 kilograms of pseudoephedrine and $237 450
Operation Roselle—a Joint Organised Crime Group involving the
AFP, the ACBPS, NSW Police, NSW Crime Commission and the ACC. This operation
resulted in the seizure of 585 kilograms of methamphetamine (street value of $438
million) and the arrest of three people.
Operation Volante—a joint operation involving the AFP, Victoria
Police, NSW Police, the ACC and the ACBPS which was targeted an international
organised criminal syndicate operating across five countries and importing
heroin and methamphetamine into Australia. A total of 27 people were arrested
and more than 42 kilograms of drugs were confiscated.
The National Anti-Gang Taskforce which was announced on 3 March
The AFP is now establishing the taskforce which will involve the AFP, state and
territory police, the ACC, the ACBPS, the Department of Immigration and Border
Protection, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and the Department of Human
Services. The taskforce will target gang-related crime across the country,
supporting the existing efforts of state and territory police.
The AFP intelligence function provides intelligence services to all
levels within the AFP through investigative teams, covert services and
maintenance of relationships with the Australian and international intelligence
Highlights for the intelligence function included Operation Whiffler:
...an intelligence-generated investigation into a transnational
organised crime syndicate suspected of large-scale imports of methamphetamine
into Australia, resulting in the arrest of five people and seizure of 110
kilograms of methamphetamine in Japan, as well as the arrest of the Australian
The committee asked if the growing online world posed any challenges for
intelligence gathering. The Commissioner replied that this consisted of one of
the AFP's main areas of concern. In particular, the Commissioner noted the
the radicalisation of people online due to the
ability of individuals to access and research radical teachings from their
Mr Kevin Zuccato, Acting Deputy Commissioner, Close Operations Support,
informed the committee that the increase in communication technology does pose
challenges for the AFP intelligence function. Conversely, it also aids the AFP
to infiltrate networks that rely on these methods of communication.
The main challenge consists of sorting through a large amount of information to
locate the information required for an investigation within a reasonable timeframe:
..it is very difficult to wade through the amount of data
that is collected and to locate the information that is actually required for
an investigation...that simply means that we need to change our investigative
approach and retrain our investigators not to ask for everything and to search
for those opportunities that exist that are going to pay the biggest dividend.
High Tech Crime Operations
High Tech Crime Operations contends with the threats of cybercrime
through disruption, mitigation and prosecution while supporting the broader AFP
through its technical capabilities.
AFP operational highlights in relation to cybercrime and high-tech crime
included Operation Lino, a criminal investigation under taken by Cyber Crime
Operations to dismantle a Romanian-based crime syndicate. The syndicate was
reported to have fraudulently used 30 000 Australian credit cards, resulting in
the loss of $30 million. In November 2012, the syndicate in its entirety was
identified, exposed and dismantled.
Proceeds of crime activities 2012-13
The Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce coordinated a systematic
approach to criminal asset confiscation, while aiming to remove the revenue of
crime. The taskforce is led by the AFP and involves expertise and resources of
the ACC and the ATO, and consists of teams based in Brisbane, Sydney,
Melbourne, Perth and Canberra. The taskforce investigates and litigates both
'conviction-based and non-conviction based proceeds of crime matters.'
The report also states that:
The work of the taskforce complements the Organised Crime
Strategic Framework by targeting the criminal economy and assists in protecting
the public finances of Australia from criminal abuse.
One major operation that involved the confiscation of assets was
Operation Volante. The operation commenced in April 2012 as an investigation
into the activities of a crime syndicate and by March 2013 the AFP had executed
37 search warrants across Melbourne:
During this operation the AFP, through the Criminal Assets
Confiscation Taskforce, took action under Commonwealth proceeds of crime
legislation and restrained approximately $9 million in assets, including 99
designer handbags and wallets, $4 million in cash, residential properties
valued at $5 million, $600 000 in casino chips, jewellery worth
approximately $1.5 million and a Lamborghini.
Another operation that resulted in action taken by the Criminal Assets Confiscation
Taskforce was Operation Pied:
Operation Pied was an investigation into an illegal
investment scheme based in the United States. The operation involved the AFP,
the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Internal Revenue
Service Criminal Investigation Division. The investigation resulted in excess
of $12 million being forfeited as proceeds of crime.
Resources and staffing
The AFP reported a departmental operating deficit of $2.5 million,
excluding depreciation and a move in the value of employee entitlements.
The departmental operating income for 2012-13 was $1282 million comprising:
$978 million in government appropriation;
$146 million from the ACT government for policing services; and
$158 million in other externally generated revenue.
Commissioner Negus stated that the deficit consisted of a variance of
less than 0.2 per cent of the AFP's total budget. The Commissioner continued:
The significance of these results is further emphasised by
the absence of any adverse findings from the Australian National Audit Office
in relation to the AFP's financial statements. For an agency our size, of
almost 7,000 people, that is an outstanding result...
In addition, the AFP received $25 million in government appropriation
for capital expenditure and $11 million as an equity injection as part of new
initiatives. In 2012-13, the AFP also administered $17 million in expenses on
behalf of the government.
As of 30 June 2013, the AFP had 6897 staff comprising 3573 sworn police,
733 protective service officers and 2591 unsworn staff.
The following table provides a comparison of staffing figures between
2011-12 and 2012-13.
2—AFP staffing 2011-12 and 2012-13
Protective service officer
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