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Prosecutors Find Common Cause

Issued: Thursday, 3 July 2014
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Attorney General Brad Hazzard today welcomed to Sydney 180 Crown prosecutors from 29 countries who are attending the regional Asia, Pacific and Middle East conference of the Australian Association of Crown Prosecutors and the International Association of Prosecutors.

Mr Hazzard said the independence of prosecutors and the court system was unchallenged, but said everyone working at the coalface of the court and justice system should be aware of the broader issue which related to community confidence.

"Criminal law is a lively beast and there's constant tension between the issue of the safety and the security of the community against the presumption of innocence for individuals until they are processed through the courts,” Mr Hazzard said.

“The challenge for us is not just to deal with the technicalities of a criminal case but also deal with the broader issues and how the legal system is working for the community.”

Conference organiser, NSW Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Tedeschi QC said: “This is a wonderful opportunity for Australian prosecutors to meet with international prosecutors from our region or the world and to discuss practical issues in real –life court situations.”

Keynote speakers include Assistant US Attorney Serrin Turner on prosecuting cybercrime and the takedown of the illegal drugs website Silk Road; the Prosecutor General for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia Serge Brammertz on prosecuting genocide and war crimes and Keith Mason QC, former President of the Court of Appeal of NSW, on judicial bullying in the courtroom.

The conference concludes tomorrow.