AQU1L6 and the Crime and Misconduct Commission; 7G5BAL (Third party)
(310289, 19 October 2011)
Section 67(1) of the Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) – grounds on which access may be refused
Section 47(3)(b) of the Right to information Act 2009 (Qld) – grounds on which access may be refused – whether disclosure would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest
The access applicant applied to the Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC) under the Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) for access to an investigation report dealing with a number of complaints made about other CMC employees.
Within the investigation report, the information in issue consisted of:
- information which would identify the individuals against whom allegations were made
- information provided in the course of the investigation by third parties
- opinions or reports about how well other officers perform their duties; and
- recommendations about action to be taken in response to the allegations.
In considering the relevant public interest factors together with the information in issue, Assistant Commissioner Henry found that:
- Given the extent and nature of the information the CMC had previously released to the access applicant, disclosure of the information in issue could not reasonably be expected to enhance the CMC’s accountability or contribute to the administration of justice (including procedural fairness).
- The information in issue comprised the non routine personal work information of various individuals and its disclosure would cause significant public interest harm and represent a significant incursion into the privacy of relevant individuals.
- There was sufficient evidence to demonstrate that the information in issue comprised information of a confidential nature which was communicated in confidence. Its disclosure could reasonably be expected to prejudice the future supply of information of this type in that if it was routinely disclosed, individuals may be far less willing to be forthcoming in future investigations of this nature.
- The public interest factors favouring nondisclosure of the information in issue outweigh those favouring disclosure and on balance, disclosure of the information in issue is contrary to the public interest under section 49 of the Right to Information Act 2009 (Qld).