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NCJ Number: 140309 Find in a Library
Title: Lawyers and Police: An Uneasy Marriage in the National Crime Authority's Fight Against Organized Crime
Journal: Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology  Volume:25  Issue:3  Dated:(December 1992)  Pages:231-254
Author(s): C Corns
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 24
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: The Australian National Crime Authority (NCA), in its strategy against organized crime, is one of the first law enforcement agencies in that country to use internal multi- disciplinary investigation teams comprised of police officers and lawyers. This article provides a socio-legal exploration of this model, which is likely to become more important in the context of overall crime control.
Abstract: The data used in this study were drawn from written and oral testimony presented to the Australian Federal Parliamentary Joint Committee on the NCA, interviews of NCA personnel and police officers, and official reports. The author concludes that, in the context of organized crime law enforcement, the sub-cultural tensions between police officers and lawyers have limited the capacity of the NCA to fulfill its functions. There are tensions resulting from police complaints against lawyers who they believe do not understand operational criminal investigation procedures, lack management skills, exclude the police from decisionmaking, and fail to acknowledge the efficacy of traditional police investigation practices. Traditional police modus operandi are characterized by autonomy, secrecy, a rigid chain of command, immediacy of decision-making, and good investigatory intuition. When officers are on secondment to the NCA, investigations are suddenly marked by dependency, openness, command ambivalence, time delays, and formalism. The tensions that have resulted in the NCA, for whatever reasons, have thwarted some agency investigations, wasted management time, exacerbated public concerns over agency policies, and led to a shakeup in the NCA. 16 notes and 40 references
Main Term(s): Interagency cooperation; Organized crime investigation
Index Term(s): Attorneys; Australia; Foreign police; Specialized investigative units
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