Frequently asked questions about investigations

Can I be investigated if I no longer work for the public sector?

The Independent Commission Against Corruption Act 1988 ("the ICAC Act") allows the ICAC to investigate the conduct of public officials even when they are no longer employed in the NSW public sector. However, the conduct under investigation must have occurred whilst the person was a public official.

Can I give my evidence in private?

The ICAC has the power to take evidence from witnesses in private. This is a decision for the presiding Commissioner who must have regard to the public interest.

Could I be arrested and charged?

If a person who has been summoned to appear at an ICAC public inquiry or compulsory examination fails to appear, then the Commissioner may issue a warrant for their arrest. In these circumstances, the person will be arrested and delivered into the custody of the ICAC for the purpose of giving evidence.

At the conclusion of an investigation, if it is appropriate to do so, the ICAC may recommend to the Director of Public Prosecutions that it consider prosecution action against a person based on the available evidence.

Do I have to co-operate with the ICAC?

The ICAC Act provides the ICAC with significant powers to investigate a matter. It is an offence to fail to provide required records, to give untruthful answers to questions asked of you at an interview or ICAC public inquiry or compulsory examination or to hinder an ICAC investigation. 

How can I find out whether I am under investigation?

Generally the ICAC will neither confirm nor deny that it is conducting an investigation before a matter is able to be made public. This includes people whose conduct may be under investigation.

If I resign would the ICAC stop investigating me?

The reasons for the ICAC commencing an investigation would not be affected by your decision to resign. There is no legal impediment to the ICAC continuing its investigation.

Should I tell work that I am under investigation?

This will depend on whether the ICAC has placed any restrictions on you divulging the fact that you are under investigation. If you are in any doubt you should contact the ICAC.

Will other people find out that I am being investigated?

While the ICAC takes care to maintain confidentiality, it may be unavoidable that the person whose conduct is under investigation will be identified. This may occur through the process of conducting interviews, the taking of statements, the service of notices and the taking of evidence. The ICAC may also conduct a public inquiry and publish a report on its investigation, in which case details of the investigation will be made public.