27 Aug 2012

Cook Islands police staff misdemeanours investigated thoroughly - Tasker

9:59 am on 27 August 2012

A former Cook Islands police commissioner says the public should take some heart that the police administration are conducting thorough investigations into staff misdemeanours.

Pat Tasker says while the recent instances of dishonesty and drug use are totally unacceptable, the fact investigations are being done and police are being sentenced in court shows the crimes are not being ignored.

Mr Tasker, who was a commissioner from 2007 to 2009, says the dishonesty in his opinion can stem from limited supervision and checks on property being held.

Calls have been made recently by politicians and others that an independent police complaints body is needed in the Cook Islands.

But Mr Tasker is not convinced the police complaints model that countries such as New Zealand use would work in the Cook Islands.

He says the New Zealand model is just an investigative body with no prosecution function.

Mr Tasker believes a complaints authority which can investigate and prosecute all government agencies, including politicians, would work better.