Final report into Michael Lawler, "an undignified spectacle of a middle-aged quasi-judicial figure" who should have been sacked
Possible unauthorised disclosure of the internal proceedings of the Standing Committee of Privileges and Members Interests

Formal complaint to Victoria Police Professional Standards Command about the Chief Commissioner's correspondence management

UPDATE - Here is the first acknowledgement that any of our correspondence has been received and will be acted on - it's a start!


6:06 AM (52 minutes ago)


to me

Thankyou for your correspondence that has been received by the Police Conduct Unit, Professional Standards Command. 


....the Police Conduct Unit will assess your correspondence to determine the most appropriate action to be taken. The process applied usually depends on the nature of the allegations and the issues involved, and will be resolved or addressed in the following manner:

  • By explanation of the law, or police policy and procedures by the Police Conduct Unit
  • By resolution through our 'Local Management Resolution' process, in relation to complaints of communication and customer service issues 
  • By formal investigation, in relation to complaints of a serious nature such as excessive or unreasonable use of force, dishonesty, threats or harassment or unlawful arrest

You will be contacted in due course, either by telephone or in writing, to explain the process and actions to be taken to address your complaint.

If at any stage you wish to withdraw your complaint please notify the Police Conduct Unit with your intention as soon as possible.

Other Option

You may prefer to complain directly to the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission website at you not be satisfied with the actions of Victoria Police. 


Making a false complaint or creating a false belief may be an offence under the Crimes Act 1958 or the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Act 2011.

Superintendent de Ridder

Conduct and Professional Standards

Professional Standards Command 



ASHTON, Graham - complaint regarding correspondence management


Michael Smith <[email protected]>

6:06 AM (0 minutes ago)
to ethical.standa.psc-policecond.
Assistant Commissioner Brett Guerin
Professional Standards Command
Victoria Police Force
Dear Assistant Commissioner Guerin,
ASHTON, Graham - Chief Commissioner of Police 
Complaint regarding correspondence management and customer service
On 16 February I sent the following written request for feedback regarding my 2012 complaint to Victoria Police (which led to the establishment of Operation Tendement).
I included this proviso "I propose to treat this note as a public communication along with any direct response Victoria Police sends to me."   I make that declaration in relation to this note too.
 As well as email transmission, I published the request to ASHTON to the internet and it was widely disseminated on Twitter and other social media platforms.
I have received no response from ASHTON's office.
Further chaser
On 14 March I sent a further follow-up note to the Victoria Police media unit, enclosing the original note to ASHTON.   I have received no response to that note.
That you cause an investigation of the of the Commissioner's correspondence management, including the registration of incoming correspondence and the Commissioner's adherence to reasonable timeframes in replying to his corro.
Yours sincerely,
Michael Smith

Michael Smith <[email protected]>

Feb 16
Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton AM
Victoria Police
Melbourne Victoria 3000

Dear Chief Commissioner,


On Wednesday, 17 October 2012 I wrote Victoria’s then Chief Commissioner of Police Ken Lay QPM to report what appeared to be at least one serious indictable offence arising from a complex series of frauds relating to an incorporated entity called “The AWU Workplace Reform Association Inc”.


Later that day the Chief Commisioner’s staff officer wrote to me to say that the apparent offences disclosed in my correspondence had been forwarded to the Crime Department for further assessment.   


I understand that after crime screening process the investigation was assigned to the Major Fraud Squad and assigned the identifier “Operation Tenement”.  I provided several hundred hours of my time and access to all the documentary and other evidentiary material i had or knew of to the detective responsible for Tendement.


It is now almost three and a half years since that initial report.  Victoria Police appears to have made a substantial resource allocation into the investigation of the initial report and the consequential offence apparently disclosed.  


I advised CCP Lay that I would make a public disclosure about my report to him and any replies I received.   More than one million individuals have visited the website where I published the correspondence - and many of them, like me would like to know what’s become of the investigation.


May I ask:


Has Operation Tendement completed its investigation?

Were any offences disclosed?

Were any crime reports logged arising from Operation Tendement?  If so for what offences?   What are the Crime Report references?

Have any offenders been identified?  For what offences?  Have any offenders been interviewed?

Has Victoria Police completed a Brief(s) of Evidence as a result of Operation Tendement?

Was the Brief(s) authorised for prosecution?  If so has process been issued?   Have any offenders been arrested or charged?

Has a Brief(s) been forwarded to Victoria’s Office of Public Prosecutions?  If so when?   If the OPP has been in possession of a Brief(s) from detectives for a period in excess of 60 days, what is the reason for any delay in formulating charges or recommending no prosecutions?

When does Victoria Police say the matters might be finalised?


I propose to treat this note as a public communication along with any direct response Victoria Police sends to me.


Yours sincerely


Michael Smith


Affidavit of Detective Sergeant Ross Mitchell to the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court describing the investigation as at September 2013


Finding of Chief Magistrate Peter Lauritsen that documents seized by Victoria :Police from the law firm Slater and Gordon under authority of a search warrant were created in the furtherance of fraud.   That finding was appealed and police discontinued their action in respect of some the documents the subject of the Chief Magistrates’ ruling






Michael Smith <[email protected]>

Mar 14 (2 days ago)
to policemedia
On Tuesday 16 February 2016 I sent the email below to the Chief Commissioner's office.
I have not received a reply.
Will Victoria Police provide an update on the matters I've raised?