- MEDIA STATEMENT BY THE ABORIGINAL LEGAL SERVICE OF WA (INC.)28 JUNE 2010
DPP Decision a Damning Indictment on Justice System says ALSWA
The decision by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) not to pursue any charges in relation to the death of Mr. Ward is ‘a damning indictment on WA’s justice system’ according to the Aboriginal Legal Service of WA (ALSWA).
Dennis Eggington, CEO of ALSWA is appalled at the decision, which has attracted international attention. “The tragic death of Mr. Ward, a highly respected Elder has shocked the nation and devastated a whole community. The failure by the DPP to respond in a just manner sends a very troubling message that the justice system systematically fails Indigenous communities throughout WA” said Mr. Eggington.
ALSWA says that the DPP and the WA Attorney General have serious questions to answer in relation to this matter. “I am at a loss to understand how the DPP can justify that no charges will be laid when the Coronial Inquiry found that the drivers (Powell and Stokoe), Department of Corrective Services (DCS) and GSL (now G4S) contributed to this death. Western Australia has blood on its hands and the failure to lay charges is an absolute whitewash and we will be bringing this serious matter to the attention of the United Nations” Mr. Eggington said.
ALSWA is concerned that too many questions remained unanswered about the conduct of this investigation and the collusion that took place. “All Western Australians deserve to have confidence in this state’s justice system and it is in the public interest that ALSWA explores all options to have this matter re-examined so that appropriate action is taken that is acceptable to all fair-minded Western Australians.”.