New Chief Examiner Appointed

26 June 2018

The Andrews Labor Government has announced the appointment of Joanne Smith as Chief Examiner.

Ms Smith has been an Examiner with the Office of the Chief Examiner since 2016, and has been acting as Chief Examiner since February.

Before joining the Office of the Chief Examiner, Ms Smith was a Deputy Public Interest Monitor, involving her in various applications for warrants and orders.

She also regularly appeared on behalf of the Public Interest Monitor in the Supreme Court and Magistrates’ Court, and before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Ms Smith held a number of positions within the Australian Crime Commission between 2006–13, including as Regional Legal Manager, overseeing a team of five legal officers in Melbourne and two in Adelaide.

Prior to her work with the Crime Commission, Ms Smith spent seven years as a solicitor at the Office of Public Prosecutions, including in the General Prosecutions Section, the Commercial Crime Group and the Corruption Prosecution Unit.

In 2008, Ms Smith received a Citizen Commendation from the Chief Commissioner of Victoria Police for her involvement in the successful prosecutions of corrupt former police officers.

Ms Smith holds a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and a Bachelor of Arts from La Trobe University.

She replaces former Chief Examiner Stephen McBurney, who resigned in January after more than two years of service to take up a position as Commissioner of the Australian Building and Construction Commission.

The Office of the Chief Examiner was established in 2005 to help combat organised crime by obtaining evidence through the use of coercive powers.

Quotes attributable to Acting Attorney-General Marlene Kairouz

“Ms Smith has worked in many of the key institutions of our legal system during her career, and I congratulate her on her appointment.”

“I’d like to thank Stephen McBurney for his work as Victoria’s Chief Examiner since 2015.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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