In March 2018 I received a petition for mercy on behalf of Jason Roberts and asked former Justice the Hon Bernard Teague AO to examine the contents of the petition and to provide me with a recommendation as to an appropriate course of action.
In late June, I received a recommendation from Justice Teague, at which point I provided it to the Department of Justice and Regulation for consideration and preparation of a brief to me.
In summary, Justice Teague recommended that there be a referral under section 327 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2009 to the judges of the Trial Division of the Supreme Court on a “point arising in the case”. The point arising in the case that has been referred is the credibility of certain evidence.
Justice Teague did not recommend a referral of the whole case to the Court of Appeal.
Justice Teague has indicated that his recommendation is “a cautious approach to referral that is sensitive to the interests of victims” and “based on the combination of evidence in both the first and second petitions.”
I have accepted the recommendation made by Justice Teague and I have written to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria to seek the opinion of the judges of the Trial Division of the Supreme Court of Victoria regarding whether the new evidence of Jason Roberts and Nicole [Surname redacted] is credible.
It is also worth noting that there is an ongoing matter before the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) relating to this case.
Accordingly, I have corresponded with both IBAC and the Court to ensure that each is aware of the potential interest of the other in the matter.
I have also corresponded with the Chief Commissioner of Police and the Director of Public Prosecutions.
The families of Senior Constable Rodney Miller and Sergeant Gary Silk have been contacted and have been made aware of this decision.
The manner in which the Court deals with the referral is a matter for the Court. As the matter is now in the hands of the Court, no further comment is appropriate.
Reviewed 19 August 2020