The West

CCC partnership workable
CCC partnership 'workable'

Legislation to bring the Corruption and Crime Commission and police together in the fight against organised crime was debated in Parliament yesterday as the fallout from the CCC's probe into Police Commissioner Karl O'Callaghan continued.

Labor is opposing the changes, as are a number of Liberal MPs as part of a 2010 parliamentary inquiry into the plan.

The legislation would allow CCC Commissioner Roger Macknay and Mr O'Callaghan to agree on joint investigations into organised crime.

But Mr O'Callaghan said yesterday he wanted the CCC investigated for the way it ran its inquiry into the use of the Police Commissioner's credit card.

He has been highly critical of the time taken by the corruption watchdog to conclude its investigation and the damage done, despite Mr O'Callaghan being cleared of misconduct.

He denied yesterday that the Barnett Government's legislation would be unworkable because of hostilities between the two agencies.

"The fact I happen to be aggrieved by some aspect of their conduct, it should not impact on our professional working relationship," Mr O'Callaghan said.

The Commissioner made clear his concerns about the legislation at the 2010 inquiry.

"To be answerable to the CCC with respect to one area of its operation and to then be required to work jointly with the CCC with respect to organised crime may create a difficult relationship between the agencies," he said.

He said there was a danger the CCC's impartiality when investigating police would be compromised.

In Parliament yesterday, shadow attorney-general John Quigley said the potential for conflict of interests to arise between the two agencies were high.

Armadale MP Tony Buti agreed, saying the Premier's legislation undermined confidence in the WA Police to tackle organised crime.

In an interjection, Colin Barnett said the Opposition's unwillingness to support the legislation showed it was "soft on crime".

He is yet to speak to the legislation.

Earlier this month, Liberal MP Nick Goiran told _The West Australian _ that the investigation of the Police Commissioner by the CCC was an example of why the Premier's legislation was problematic.

The West Australian

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