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ICAC powers to be clarified in High Court

Margaret Cuneen's barrister Arthur Moses SC at the Supreme Court hearing in Sydney late last year over an injunction against the Independent Commission Against Corruption. (AAP Image/ Britta Campion)

Margaret Cuneen’s barrister Arthur Moses SC at the Supreme Court hearing in Sydney late last year over an injunction against the Independent Commission Against Corruption. (AAP Image/ Britta Campion)

Sydney [AAP]

The future of the NSW corruption watchdog goes under the microscope today (Wednesday) when the High Court decides whether it has the power to pursue crown prosecutor Margaret Cunneen.

The Independent Commission Against Corruption is challenging an appeal court’s decision that it does not have the authority to proceed with an inquiry into allegations Ms Cunneen attempted to pervert the course of justice.

The silk is accused of advising her son’s girlfriend to fake chest pains at the scene of a 2014 car crash in order to avoid a breath test.

At issue is whether Ms Cunneen’s alleged actions fell within the definition of corrupt conduct in section 8 of the ICAC act.

A narrow interpretation of the ICAC’s powers could have broader implications for other investigations.

The commission has already deferred reports into two other operations, Credo and Spicer, pending Wednesday’s verdict.


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