CANBERRA – Justice Minister Michael Keenan expects “the worst of the worst crims” and terrorists will be hunted down through a new Australian super spy agency, expected to be given the green light today.
The expected, and as yet unnamed, merger will comprise the analysts, intelligence and “big data” from the Australian Crime Commission and law enforcement information gathering and sharing agency, CrimTrac.
Federal, state and New Zealand Attorneys-General and Justice Ministers will today tick off on the plan at a meeting Canberra.
It comes after a “silo mentality” among law enforcement agencies was criticised in the wake of the Lindt Café siege in Sydney.
Keenan rejects criticism of intelligence sharing, describing Australia’s current policing co-operation as “unprecedented.”
Still he insists this new criminal intelligence agency is needed.
“It will create and even more powerful agency, even more useful for our state and territory and federal police,” the Minister told ABC radio.
“We always need to look at ways we can do things better. It is never about standing still here. The organised crime syndicates we target don’t stand still. The terrorists we target don’t stand still.”
The merger will allow law enforcement agencies to deal with real time threats and involve a massive upgrade of I.T. systems to facilitate “big data” sharing.
“What we are always doing is to be ahead of the game and doing things better, faster and in a way that takes down organised crime in a more effective way,” Keenan said.
The research agency, the Australian Institute of Criminology, will also be part of the intelligence merger.