The West

Terror links task force

A $24 million injection into the Australian Crime Commission will be used to expand the use of "coercive hearings" of terror suspects, Justice Minister Michael Keenan has revealed.

Mr Keenan said the creation of a foreign fighters task force within the ACC would explore the links between terrorism and organised crime. The ACC, Australia's premier criminal intelligence agency, has already conducted 40 coercive hearings on 24 individuals.

Those called before a coercive examination must answer questions or produce documents, even if the information they provide may incriminate or render them liable to a penalty.

"We know internationally that terrorist groups and extremists use organised crime groups to source weapons or resources and we know that they actively participate in organised criminal activity," Mr Keenan said.

The Royal Commission into Union Corruption recently uncovered evidence that Islamist terrorist Khaled Sharrouf worked as a bodyguard and standover man for a Sydney businessmen known to have organised crime connections.

Sharrouf, 33, recently tweeted gruesome pictures of his seven-year-old son holding a severed head in a Syrian town controlled by the ISIL terrorist group.

Mr Keenan said the foreign fighters task force would use the ACC's specialised criminal intelligence to detect links between extremist groups and organised crime.

The West Australian

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