Judge to be investigated

ABC – Lateline


TONY JONES, PRESENTER: A high-profile prosecutor in New South Wales has stood aside while the Independent Commission Against Corruption investigates claims she and her son tried to pervert the course of justice.

The commission is investigating whether Margaret Cunneen SC counselled her son’s girlfriend, Sophia Tilley, to pretend to have chest pains to thwart police officers.

It’s alleged Sophia Tilley was trying to prevent police from obtaining evidence of her blood alcohol level at the scene of a car accident earlier this year.

Ms Cunneen rejects the allegations as the result of a malicious complaint.

BRAD HAZZARD, NSW ATTORNEY-GENERAL: Ms Cunneen was agreed to – with the DPP to step aside and not take part in any current prosecutions or future prosecutions and that’s appropriate. And beyond that, she, like every other citizen of NSW, has the presumption of innocence until we see the resolution of those ICAC matters.

TONY JONES: Margaret Cunneen was most recently the commissioner presiding over the special commission into child sexual abuse and alleged cover-up in the Maitland-Newcastle Catholic Diocese. Ms Cunneen also appeared as a witness at the Royal commission into child sexual abuse expressing regret for the distress caused by her advice that swimming coach Scott Volkers should not be recharged for indecency.

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