Commissioner reminds critics that ICAC leads to prison terms

ANTI-CORRUPTION Commissioner Megan Latham has hit out at claims ICAC investigations are pointless and rarely lead to criminal prosecution.

In a rare statement, the former Supreme Court judge said media reports - the majority of which surround the lack of DPP attention to the current corruption findings against Eddie Obeid - may have created an "incorrect" public perception.

She re-enforced ICAC did not have the power to prosecute and instead, referred cases to the DPP for consideration and that 22 people were currently before the courts as a result.

As recently as Thursday, Glen Lapham was jailed for 15 months for charges arising from Operation Jarek.

Jacqueline Verdeyan was also previously sentenced to 15 months jail.

The judge deliberating over the fate of sacked Sydney Ferries CEO Geoff Smith announced this week that he was considering imposing a jail term of two years.

"In the last 30 months, in addition to the three specific cases referred to...32 people have pleaded guilty or been found guilty of charges arising from ICAC investigations," Ms Latham said

"Of those 32 people, four people have been sentenced to full-time imprisonment, five people have been sentenced to imprisonment to be served by way of home detention, and eight people have been sentenced to imprisonment but had the execution of that sentence suspended on condition they enter into a good behaviour bond.

"In order to deal with the public perception about ICAC-related prosecutions, the commission is revising how information about prosecutions is presented on its website."

A parliamentary inquiry into ICAC is currently underway in NSW.

Ms Latham said the commission would not be commenting further.

Topics:  corruption icac jail

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