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A Queensland based private investigator has failed to have his licence re-instated after using information illegally obtained from 2 Queensland police detectives from a police computer system.
The Office of Fair Trading ("OFT") refused to renew the private investigators licence after being advised that the person in question had been convicted of several counts of computer hacking and misuse under Chapter 37 of the Queensland Criminal Code. The investigator illegally gained access to car registration details, addresses, phone numbers, criminal histories and other information and was subsequently sentenced by the Magistrates' Court to 18 months' probation and 240 hours of community service with no conviction recorded.
The decision by the OFT was subsequently appealed by the private investigator where the Queensland Civil & Administrative Tribunal ("QCAT") upheld the decision of the OFT to refuse the licence renewal. QCAT stated in a press release, "It was contrary to the public interest to send a message to the security industry that a private investigator who used contacts in that way could continue to work without interruption".
The detectives involved in supplying the information to the private investigator have since had their employment terminated by Queensland Police and plead guilty to using a restricted computer program.
You can read the decision of QCAT here.