Investigative interviewing of suspects in Australia

Moston, Stephen (2009) Investigative interviewing of suspects in Australia. In: Williamson, Tom, Milne, Becky, and Savage, Stephen P., (eds.) International Developments in Investigative Interviewing. Willan, Cornwall, UK, pp. 3-23.

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Abstract

In Australia the criminal justice system is largely the responsibility of the states (there are six) and territories (two), with each state and territory having its own police force, laws and justice system. The Commonwealth, in the form of the Australian Federal Police, which was established in 1979, only takes responsibility for a limited range of offences, including national and international operations, and peacekeeping (Fleming 2004).

Surprisingly little primary research has been conducted in this country on investigative interviews with suspects. Instead, research has tended to focus on perceptions of the investigative process, with studies exploring the views of judges, prosecutors, defence lawyers, police officers, the public and even defendants (e.g. Dixon 2006; Moston and Fisher 2006; Kebbell et al. 2006). The reasons for this particular focus are complex, but centre on a deep-seated distrust (in both directions) between academics and police officers. This chapter will explore what we currently objectively know about investigative interviewing practices in Australia, with data mainly coming from a series of thorough (but narrowly focused) audit commissions, and also how the various players in the criminal justice system see the legislation, technology and operational practice of interviewing. It focuses on the investigative interviewing of suspects in criminal investigations, and thus excludes some interesting and innovative work on the interviewing of children who have witnessed criminal activity (e.g. Wilson and Powell 2001; Powell et al. 2002; Powell and Thomson 2003).

Item ID: 10948
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
Keywords: police; suspect; confession; interrogation; forensic; crime
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ISBN: 978-1-84392-276-6
Date Deposited: 31 May 2010 00:10
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1602 Criminology > 160205 Police Administration, Procedures and Practice @ 40%
17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170104 Forensic Psychology @ 60%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940404 Law Enforcement @ 100%
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