Generic - News & Media 2

Former Home Affairs officers engaged in corruption by using fraudulent medical certificates

The Integrity Commissioner and head of the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI), Jaala Hinchcliffe, has published her report on Operation Ajax.

Operation Ajax was an investigation into the use of fraudulent medical certificates by officers of the former Department of Immigration and Border Protection (now known as the Department of Home Affairs) between 2011 and 2017.

The joint investigation by ACLEI and Home Affairs found two former officers, Officer Q and Officer H, engaged in corrupt conduct. Operation Ajax found that Officer Q used false medical certificates to support applications for personal leave on 28 occasions and received a benefit of approximately $9,270 to which she was not entitled.

The investigation also found that Officer H provided six fraudulent medical certificates, and received a benefit of approximately $384.75 to which they were not entitled.

Ms Hinchcliffe said, “The evidence demonstrates that both officers engaged in conduct during the performance of their duties as Home Affairs employees to dishonestly benefit themselves and cause a financial detriment to the Commonwealth.”

As a result of the investigation, Officer Q was convicted and sentenced to a 12 month good behaviour order and 200 hours of community service. Officer Q was also ordered to repay a total of $4,564.12 within two years. The remaining amount of $4,705.57 was recovered by Home Affairs upon separation.

Both the former officers carried out corporate functions in the department, reinforcing the importance of agencies undertaking consistent integrity education, training and due diligence across all agency staff.

Since the investigation, Home Affairs has implemented a number of changes to address the issues observed in Operation Ajax including people and culture initiatives and fraud and corruption control measures. 

About the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI)

ACLEI is committed to preventing and investigating corruption issues relating to Commonwealth law enforcement agencies. ACLEI supports the Integrity Commissioner to provide independent assurance to government about the integrity of prescribed law enforcement agencies and their staff members. The office of the Integrity Commissioner and ACLEI are established by the Law Enforcement Integrity Commissioner Act 2006.

Media Release - Operation Ajax media_release_-_operation_ajax.pdf (105.07 KB)