The decision concerned an application brought by AB (the Commissioner of Police) and EF seeking to prevent CD (The Director of Public Prosecutions) from disclosing to a number of convicted persons that their barrister (EF) was a registered police informer while she acted for them. The Victorian Supreme Court dismissed the applications holding that the claim for public interest immunity in protecting the confidentiality of the identity of a registered police informer must give way to the public interest in the proper administration of justice and ensuring a lawyer’s breach of duty does not undermine a person’s right to a fair trial.

An appeal to the Court of Appeal was dismissed and while special leave to the High Court was granted on 9 May 2018, it was subsequently revoked on 5 November 2018.

Note: The Chief Commissioner of Police brought a further application in the Court of Appeal seeking to have the name of EF suppressed, which was unsuccessful (see AB v CD & EF [2019] VSCA 28).  EF made a successful application to the High Court to gave EF’s children’s names and images suppressed (see AB v CD & EF [2019] HCA 6).

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