AFP officer quit after bikie gang link revealed
AN AUSTRALIAN Federal Police officer with top secret security clearance resigned in June last year after it was found he failed to disclose dealings with a motorcycle gang linked to organised crime, confidential documents show.
The AFP's internal investigation also ruled the protective service officer had breached the AFP Code of Conduct by accessing more than 4000 police intelligence reports, most of which were unrelated to his duties, including a small number detailing information about outlaw bikie gangs.
A memo from the AFP to the external corruption watchdog, the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity, written in September 2011, says the man held top secret clearance for six years before he was investigated internally in 2009.
No evidence of the officer passing information on to gangs was found, but the AFP's professional standards investigation still recommended his employment suitability be reviewed.
The man resigned from the AFP before his sacking could be considered.
It is unclear from the documents, obtained by the Sunday Canberra Times under a Freedom of Information request, whether the AFP hired the man knowing of his links with bikies.
However, the AFP knew of one relationship the officer had with an outlaw bikie when it was raised in his top secret security clearance interview in 2003.
During this interview the officer was advised to ''reconsider'' his relationship with the bikie in question. It was later found that in the same interview and in the years since he did not disclose a relationship with a second bikie, a connection described as an apparent conflict of interest in the final investigation memo.
Of the two bikies mentioned, the officer had known one since childhood and the other from a previous job he held.
The officer argued his failure to declare his relationship with one bikie was due to ignorance.
''However, he had ample opportunity to declare his interest and yet failed,'' the AFP investigation noted.
The investigation, completed in September last year, found the officer also breached the AFP Code of Conduct when he failed to report chance meetings with one of the gang members in 2007. The officer was seen talking to a bikie while on duty in mid-2009, an encounter that sparked the AFP's investigation, which concluded two years later.
An AFP spokeswoman said no criminal charges were laid because there was not enough evidence to show an offence had occurred.
''The AFP is well placed to ensure the integrity and professional standards of its workforce,'' she said.
''The AFP does not tolerate misconduct by any AFP employee and all allegations of misconduct or unprofessional behaviour are treated seriously.''