Barristers deliver secret report

by Chris Griffith
Published 13 Oct 1996 in The Sunday Mail


my face


Barristers Tony Morris, QC, and Eddie Howard will provide State Cabinet with a second, confidential report on allegations against former Fitzgerald inquiry investigator John Huey.

Last week the barristers provided Cabinet with their public report on two cases: the Heiner shredding affair, and allegations by former detectives Gordon Harris and John Reynolds involving Huey.

When dealing with the Harris/Reynolds allegations, the report supported Director of Public Prosecutions Royce Miller, QC's decision in 1990 not to charge Huey with five counts of fabricating evidence, after an investigation by Harris and Reynolds.

It recommended the case not be subject to a further inquiry.

But the barristers have signalled they will provide Cabinet with a second secret report detailing Harris and Reynolds' motives for pursuing Huey, although the report says the motives were not a factor in their support for Mr Miller.

"There remains, however, the possibility that Mr Reynolds and Mr Harris may succeed in persuading the government - contrary to our strong recommendation - that a public inquiry is still justified in relation to their allegations of impropriety regarding the termination of proceedings against Mr Huey, and the subsequent decision not to bring fresh charges," the report said.

"In the event of such an inquiry, much of the material which we have gathered may well be highly relevant as reflecting on Mr Reynolds' and Mr Harris's motives.

"Accordingly, we have prepared and will provide to the Premier and State Cabinet a separate confidential report, detailing the evidence which exists relevant to that issue, and the conclusions which we regard as being open based on that evidence."

Mr Morris and Mr Howard said the secret report should be released only if the government reopened the Harris/reynolds affair.

If this did not happen, "it is our intention that this seperate, confidential report should forever remain confidential, for the reasons which we have identified."