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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Queensland CMC - Police Taser review cover-up: Pyke repeats call for Royal Commission

August 18, 2009

“Queenslanders need to ask why the joint Crime and Misconduct Commission and Queensland Police Service Taser Review Report is being suppressed,” former-Queensland MP and former-Queensland Police Service Sergeant Peter Pyke said today.

Pyke says sources confirm the Taser Review Report was completed at least ten days ago, and warns that the failure of the Bligh Government to publish the report smacks of a high-level cover-up. “I’m told the Bligh Government is ducking for cover over the Taser Review Report because it is scared witless of the implications,” warns Pyke.

The review was announced on 15 June 2009, in response to widespread community alarm about Tasers following the death of Antonio Galeano of a heart attack in Brandon, North Queensland on 12 June 2009, after multiple applications of a Taser by Queensland police.

“The Bligh Government is particularly vulnerable to the implications of the CMC component of the Taser Review,” says Pyke. Pyke says the CMC component of the latest Taser review lays bare two issues likely to further injure the Bligh Government and erode public confidence in the Queensland Police Service, already damaged by allegations of corruption earlier this year.

“The first matter Queenslanders need to consider is what I have been told are ‘serious safety concerns’,” says Pyke. Pyke says the the Queensland Police Service appears to have failed to understand, and train for the alleged ‘serious safety concerns’ related to Taser-use.

“Think that’s bad?” asks Pyke, “It gets worse.”

“The other matter is the question of corruption,” says Pyke.

Pyke says the CMC report into the Queensland Police Service acquisition of Tasers has exposed something seriously smelly about the process, both within the Police Service, and inside the Police Union Executive.

“Former-Police Minister Judy Spence may also have some questions to answer,” says Pyke.

Pyke says the CMC component of the Taser Review is highly critical of the Queensland Police Service and says this latest crisis puts the need for a Royal Commission into high-level corruption and police misconduct beyond question.

Pyke says a meeting of the Queensland Police Union Executive today, Wednesday 19 August 2009, is expected to urgently discuss the implications of the CMC report.

“Has the Police Union Executive been slipped an advance copy of the CMC’s report into Tasers?” asks Pyke.

Pyke has previously said that the QPS is engaged in a high-level cover-up of Taser problems. Pyke repeated his call for a royal commission, and for the sacking of Commissioner Bob Atkinson, and Deputies Ian Stewart and Kathy Rynders, whom Pyke says have failed to properly administer the Police Service.

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